Meghan Markle has finally spoken up about the widespread protests that engulfed the US following the death of George Floyd owing to police brutality and rampant racism. Virtually addressing the graduating students of her former school, Immaculate Heart High School, Los Angeles, Markle, in her powerful speech, lent her support to the Black Lives Matter movement and expressed her regret that the students grew up in “a world where this is still present.”
Meghan Markle began her heartfelt speech, directly addressing the students, by explaining that she hadn’t spoken about the tragic demise of George Floyd, the ongoing Black Lives Matter movement, and the social unrest in the nation because she “wanted to say the right thing.” But she soon realized that “the only wrong thing to say is to say nothing.”
“…because George Floyd’s life mattered and Breonna Taylor’s life mattered and Philando Castile’s life mattered and Tamir Rice’s life mattered, and so did so many other people whose names we know and whose names we do not know,” she said.
Meghan Markle reminded the students, who are 18 or will be 18 soon, that they can use their “voice in a stronger way than you’ve ever been able to” as they will get to vote now.
She went on to express her regret that the young generation has grown up in a world where racism, casteism, and hatred still exists. Recounting a time when she was 11 or 12-years-old and her hometown was hit by riots after the 1991 incident of the Los Angeles Police Department violently beating Rodney King, Markle remarked how even that tragic event was “triggered by senseless acts of racism.”
“I remember the curfew and I remember rushing back home and on that drive home, seeing ash fall from the sky and smelling the smoke and seeing the smoke billow out of buildings, and seeing people run out of buildings carrying bags and looting,” she recalled, adding that “those memories don’t go away.”
“I am sorry that in a way we have not gotten to the place where you deserve it to be,” she said.
But what gives her hope is “seeing people stand in solidarity . . . we are seeing communities come together and to uplift.”
“I know you know that Black Lives Matter. I am already excited for what you are going to do in the world. You are ready, we need you and you are prepared,” Meghan Markle added. “I’m so proud to call each of you a fellow alumnus. I am cheering you on, all along the way. I am exceptionally proud of you.”
The Minneapolis police officer accused of George Floyd’s death has been arrested and charged with second-degree murder.