Context Research Essay: RFK SpeechSAFA SYED TARIQSPRING 2015 ENG 1302-23011PROFESSOR MAMOLAWORDS: 2011
[Tariq 2]It’s not every day that we come across politicians that have something unique about them. What about politicians that care about their people enough to change a whole city’s manner in a day? We are not left with much of these leaders today, but their legacy continues to live, to be remembered, and mostly to be learned from. In American history, particularly in the 1950’s and on, we came across great leaders standing up for what they knew to be fair, just, no matter the consequence. One man pushed the game further and created a reality that only a few dreamed of.His name, Robert Francis Kennedy.Robert Francis Kennedy, more commonly known as RFK or Robert Kennedy, was the younger brother of former president John F Kennedy. He was born in Massachusetts, in the year 1925. Kennedy was the seventh child out of nine who had to “struggle to survive” (Kennedy Family, line 1) to reach the top. After graduating Harvard and University of Virginia School of Law, Robert “was appointed as Attorney General of the Unites States” (Kennedy Family, line 7) by his brother, John F Kennedy, in 1960. As Attorney General, not only did Robert advise his brother, the President, on worldly situations, such as the Cuban Missile Crisis, but he also actively participated in activism to advocate the poor, recognized the minorities, and halt the rise of the Vietnam War. About 3 years later, John F Kennedy wasassassinated in Dallas, Texas. This news hit very hard on Robert, so much so that the following year Robert Kennedy resigned as Attorney General. He took some time off to recollect and reconnect himself. It was not until March of 1968, when RFK decided to hop back on to politics, announcing he was running for presidency. This became a huge hit especially because many Americans were familiar with Robert’s policies on social issues, because he was the former president’s brother(whom many also greatly admired), and
[Tariq 3]because lastly, the current president, Lyndon B Johnson, was not doing a great job in leading the country in terms of war, race, and so much more.“I do not run for the presidency merely to oppose any man, but to propose new policies. I run because I am convinced that this country is on a perilous course and because I have such strong feelings about what must be done, and I feel that I’m obliged to do all I can” (Kennedy, line 34).It was April 4, 1968, Robert Kennedy headed to Indianapolis to give his campaign speechfor the Democratic primary nomination. His opponent, Lyndon B. Johnson, who was alsorunning for the Democratic nominee in the primarys.Both candidates had major supporters, and everyone knew this race would be one of the best of the decade.