Dokumente zum Zeitgeschehen

»Wir müssen wachsam sein gegenüber den dunkleren Strömungen unserer Geschichte«

Rede von Barack Obama auf der Trauerfeier für John Lewis, 30.7.2020 (engl. Originalfassung)

It is a great honor to be back in Ebenezer Baptist Church, in the pulpit of its greatest pastor, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., to pay my respects to perhaps his finest disciple – an American whose faith was tested again and again to produce a man of pure joy and unbreakable perseverance – John Robert Lewis.

[...]

Now, this country is a constant work in progress. We were born with instructions: to form a more perfect union. Explicit in those words is the idea that we are imperfect; that what gives each new generation purpose is to take up the unfinished work of the last and carry it further than anyone might have thought possible.

[...]

But the testing of his faith produced perseverance. He knew that the march is not yet over, that the race is not yet won, that we have not yet reached that blessed destination where we are judged by the content of our character. He knew from his own life that progress is fragile; that we have to be vigilant against the darker currents of this country's history, of our own history, with their whirlpools of violence and hatred and despair that can always rise again.

Bull Connor may be gone. But today we witness with our own eyes police officers kneeling on the necks of Black Americans. George Wallace may be gone. But we can witness our federal government sending agents to use tear gas and batons against peaceful demonstrators. We may no longer have to guess the number of jellybeans in a jar in order to cast a ballot. But even as we sit here, there are those in power are doing their darnedest to discourage people from voting – by closing polling locations, and targeting minorities and students with restrictive ID laws, and attacking our voting rights with surgical precision, even undermining the postal service in the runup to an election that is going to be dependent on mailed-in ballots so people don't get sick.
 

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