Friday, June 7, 2013

The Power To Be Heard

Via digby, Bobby Kennedy speaks on June 6, 1966 about freedom of speech and freedom from interference.

Hand-in-hand with freedom of speech goes the power to be heard — to share in the decisions of government which shape men’s lives. Everything that makes men’s lives worthwhile — family, work, education, a place to rear one’s children and a place to rest one’s head — all this depends on the decisions of government; all can be swept away by a government which does not heed the demands of its people, and I mean all of its people. Therefore, the essential humanity of man can be protected and preserved only where the government must answer — not just to the wealthy; not just to those of a particular religion, not just to those of a particular race; but to all of the people.

And even government by the consent of the governed, as in our own Constitution, must be limited in its power to act against its people: so that there may be no interference with the right to worship, but also no interference with the security of the home; no arbitrary imposition of pains or penalties on an ordinary citizen by officials high or low; no restriction on the freedom of men to seek education or to seek work or opportunity of any kind, so that each man may become all that he is capable of becoming.

3 barks and woofs on “The Power To Be Heard

  1. Nice counterpoint to the rest of your posts today. I do realize things have changed in the past 43 years as far as the use of “men” and “he” to mean everybody, but it’s still irritating to see it.

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