It's one thing to talk the talk--but how many people actually walk the walk of their talk? We all know Senator Ted Kennedy did a lot of talking during his 40 plus years in politics. We also know he followed up that talk with action.
During his years in the United States Senate, Kennedy fought many battles for the rights of others.
In 1964, for example, he gave the first speech to the Senate urging passage of the Civil Rights Act and outlawing segregation in public accommodations. He also supported the Economic Opportunity Act, which established programs like Head Start and the Job Corps.
Ten years later, Kennedy introduced comprehensive legislation for national health insurance. Then in 1975, he sponsored the Education for All Handicapped Children Act, which later became the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, requiring a free and appropriate public education for children with disabilities in every state.
In 1979, as Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, he encouraged selection of women and minorities in judicial nominations.
Nearly 20 years later, his home state of Massachusetts, appointed it's first African-American to the State Supreme Court. Judge Roderick Ireland became the first African-American to sit on this bench in its over three hundred year history. That's one appointment I am personally giving Senator Kennedy credit for.
Judge Ireland also happens to be my daughter's godfather.