LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – “I’m so sorry you have to grow up in a world where this is still present.”
Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex and a Los Angeles-native, posted Thursday a graduation speech to her former alma mater addressing the death of George Floyd.
“What is happening in our country, and in our state, and in our hometown of L.A., has been absolutely devastating,” Markle said in a virtual address.
The 38-year-old Markle delivered a nearly six-minute speech to the Immaculate Heart High School and Middle School, an all-girl private Catholic school in Los Feliz where she attended and graduated in 1999.
Markle explained why she decided to speak out, knowing doing so might garner criticism.
“I wanted to say the right thing. And I was really nervous that I wouldn’t and that it would get picked apart. And I realized, 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 matter and Tamir Rice’s life mattered, and so did so many other people whose names we know and whose names we do not know.”
Markle described being an 11-year-old when the Rodney King riots broke out in 1992.
“I remember the curfew, and I remember rushing back home, and on that drive home and seeing ash fall out of the sky and smelling the smoke and seeing the smoke billow out of buildings and seeing people run out of buildings carrying bags and lootings. And I remember seeing men in the back of a van holding guns and rifles,” she said.
After famously choosing to step back from their royal duties back in January and try and become financially independent, Markle, her husband Prince Harry and their young son relocated to L.A. in March.
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“𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐨𝐧𝐥𝐲 𝐰𝐫𝐨𝐧𝐠 𝐭𝐡𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐭𝐨 𝐬𝐚𝐲 𝐢𝐬 𝐭𝐨 𝐬𝐚𝐲 𝐧𝐨𝐭𝐡𝐢𝐧𝐠” "𝘛𝘩𝘦 𝘧𝘪𝘳𝘴𝘵 𝘵𝘩𝘪𝘯𝘨 𝘐 𝘸𝘢𝘯𝘵 𝘵𝘰 𝘴𝘢𝘺 𝘵𝘰 𝘺𝘰𝘶 𝘪𝘴 𝘵𝘩𝘢𝘵 𝘐’𝘮 𝘴𝘰𝘳𝘳𝘺. 𝘐’𝘮 𝘴𝘰 𝘴𝘰𝘳𝘳𝘺 𝘺𝘰𝘶 𝘩𝘢𝘷𝘦 𝘵𝘰 𝘨𝘳𝘰𝘸 𝘶𝘱 𝘪𝘯 𝘢 𝘸𝘰𝘳𝘭𝘥 𝘸𝘩𝘦𝘳𝘦 𝘵𝘩𝘪𝘴 𝘪𝘴 𝘴𝘵𝘪𝘭𝘭 𝘱𝘳𝘦𝘴𝘦𝘯𝘵” "You are going to lead with love, you are going to lead with compassion, you are going to use your voice." Meghan Markle virtually delivered a graduation speech to her old school, Immaculate Heart High School and Middle School in Los Angeles, that addressed the current protests against racism and police brutality in the United States and her own history as a biracial woman growing up in California. “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 don't know. Stephon Clark. His life mattered." "You are equipped, you are ready, we need you and you’re prepared”