On Sunday, Senator Elizabeth Warren delivered a speech extolling the importance of the Black Lives Matter movement like none of the actual presidential candidates have. Though she’s said she’s not running, deliveries like these are why some Warren supporters are still hopeful.

At the Edward M. Kennedy Institute, Warren drew parallels between BLM and the 1960’s Civil Rights movement and firmly came down against the ambivalence that’s led to over-policing and police violence.

From Warren’s website, where the full speech is posted:

None of us can ignore what is happening in this country. Not when our black friends, family, neighbors literally fear dying in the streets. This is the reality all of us must confront, as uncomfortable and ugly as that reality may be. It comes to us to once again affirm that black lives matter, that black citizens matter, that black families matter.

She noted the Senator Kennedy himself fought for the Civil Rights Act just four months after his brother President Kennedy was assassinated. He drove home the bill’s importance by saying, “We should use our powers not to create conditions of oppression that lead to violence, but conditions of freedom that lead to peace.”

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After quoting Kennedy, Warren stated that violence against people of color wasn’t the only tool of oppression.

Economic justice is not — and has never been — sufficient to ensure racial justice. Owning a home won’t stop someone from burning a cross on the front lawn. Admission to a school won’t prevent a beating on the sidewalk outside. The tools of oppression were woven together, and the civil rights struggle was fought against that oppression wherever it was found — against violence, against the denial of voting rights and against economic injustice.

She went on, saying that the Civil Rights Act made progress, but not enough and called out Sandra Bland, Freddie Gray and Michael Brown as police violence victims.

We’ve seen sickening videos of unarmed, black Americans cut down by bullets, choked to death while gasping for air - their lives ended by those who are sworn to protect them. Peaceful, unarmed protestors have been beaten. Journalists have been jailed. And, in some cities, white vigilantes with weapons freely walk the streets. And it’s not just about law enforcement either. Just look to the terrorism this summer at Emanuel AME Church. We must be honest: Fifty years after John Kennedy and Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke out, violence against African Americans has not disappeared.

Warren’s speech was so moving, anti-police violence activist Deray Mckesson championed her words to the Washington Post:

“Senator Warren’s speech clearly and powerfully calls into question America’s commitment to black lives by highlighting the role that structural racism has played and continues to play with regard to housing discrimination and voting rights,” said DeRay Mckesson, a prominent activist who said he hopes to meet with Warren to further discuss racial injustice. “And Warren, better than any political leader I’ve yet heard, understands the protests as a matter of life or death — that the American dream has been sustained by an intentional violence and that the uprisings have been the result of years of lived trauma.”

We know you said you don’t want to run Sen. Warren, but are you sure?


Contact the author at Hillary@jezebel.com.

Image via Youtube.