Monday, January 17, 2011

Martin Luther King Jr., In His Own Words

From Democracy Now.

Also, in case you have not heard it recently (or worse, at all) please check out the I Have a Dream speech, which Dr. King gave from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial less than 50 years ago. Less than a year later, President Johnson signed into law the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

On the day when the nation celebrates Dr. King's birthday (January 15th), and life, it is a necessary reminder to those who think that the nation has conquered its tendency to condone racial discrimination, and all kind of discrimination based on an individual's unchangeable traits, that fewer than 50 years have passed since the United States has started closing the most horrendous chapter in its young history. If we are to honor Dr. King's memory, we cannot act, nor should we speak, as if there did not exist pockets of obstinate resistance to the end of racial discrimination that Dr. King helped bring about.

And, as Bill Moyers reminded us in an episode of his inimitable Journal, Dr. King was against the Vietnam war, for it subtracted funds that would have been better spent on social programs. An important reminder, at a time when some have the gall to say Dr. King would have supported the war in Afghanistan. Dr. King was also for social justice, not just racial justice. Another important reminder, at a time when one party is hell bent on denying Americans health care as a right, and the other is complicitly obliging.

Learn about Dr. King's ideas and life. It is the only way we can make sure that no one can twist the facts and mangle Dr. King's legacy beyond recognition.

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