Have you had a chance to catch up with Mayor Mitch Landrieu’s remarkable speech about removing the statues of Confederate notables from their prominent places in New Orleans? It’s a speeech that Frank Bruni called “a speech about facing and owning the truth” in today’s New York Times.
About the speech Bruni recognizes
It cut straight to the heart of things, making the case against monuments that glorify the Confederacy by asking us to consider them “from the perspective of an African-American mother or father trying to explain to their fifth-grade daughter” why a statue of the most famous Confederate general occupied such a lofty perch above the city.
“Can you look into that young girl’s eyes and convince her that Robert E. Lee is there to encourage her?” Landrieu said. “Do you think she will feel inspired — and hopeful — by that story? Do these monuments help her see a future with limitless potential?”
He then put her experience in a larger context. “Have you ever thought that if her potential is limited, yours and mine are, too?”
There’s a lot to learn about doing and thinking the right thing and using the power of your voice in the speech. Bruni’s appreciation contains a complete video of the speech. Take about twenty minutes to watch and see what you think.