Fifty years ago today, Governor George Wallace of Alabama attempted to stop the registration of two black students at the University of Alabama, and only stepped aside, after making an appeal for states rights, when the Deputy Attorney General informed him that he was about to be arrested for defying a federal court order!
And that evening, President John F. Kennedy gave what might have been his most historic speech in office, calling for a civil rights bill, despite the fact that odds of passing into law were nil, and only accelerated by his death in November, and the amazing ability of Lyndon B. Johnson to accomplish passage in 1964.
John F. Kennedy demonstrated great courage, conviction, principle, and morals in that speech, and as a college student, I recall how it impacted myself and my generation with the idealism that all Americans should be treated equally under the law.
Kennedy demonstrated what has occurred not many times, true leadership and commitment to a great cause, no matter how much it might harm him politically. This is worthy of special praise and attention!
When Senator Ted Kennedy died in 2009, it was assumed that the Democrats would hold his seat in the special election set up in early 2010, but instead Martha Coakley lost to Scott Brown, who held the seat for three years, until Elizabeth Warren defeated him in the next regular election in 2012.
Now we are faced with the same circumstance, as the special election for John Kerry’s Senate seat will be held in two weeks, and Democratic Congressman Ed Markey is competing against Republican Gabriel Gomez, and indications are that the race is close!
Markey has been an outstanding Congressman for an amazing number of years, 36, ever since 1976. If he wins, with his outstanding liberal record on issues, he would be an exceptional replacement for John Kerry, just as Elizabeth Warren is for Ted Kennedy. He likely is the longest serving Congressman to attempt a change to the US Senate, and one of the older freshman Senators in history, if he wins, at age 66!
We cannot afford to have a Republican take away a seat that the Democrats have always been able to count on, particularly with tight races coming up in the midterm elections of 2014! Markey deserves all support he can gather, financially, and with volunteer work, to hold on to a seat that represents the most Democratic state in the nation in recent years!