Monday, January 18, 2016

What Would Martin Luther King Jr. Think Today (annual post)

If Martin Luther King Jr. were alive today I believe he would be deeply disturbed at the socio-economic condition and policy direction of the United States in both domestic and international affairs. 

More specifically, he would be appalled that our global response to 9/11 was war, invasion, and occupation; that our domestic response to 9/11 was a so-called Patriot Act curtailing civil liberties; that our current military strategy employs targeted killing using unmanned drones; that in spite of record rates of child and family poverty our “leaders” are unable to utter the p-word; that in the midst of the worst economic crisis since the great depression there is a greater concern with cutting deficits than creating jobs; that in spite of record income inequality, raising taxes on the rich is fiercely resisted while busting labor unions is embraced; that in response to the endless string of mass shootings many Americans have chosen to stock up on additional weapons;  that in response to a failing economy that systematically marginalizes racial minorities we have chosen prisonfare over welfare, the dragnet over the safety net, police violence over public safety; that the United States is the global arms merchant; and that rather than deepening democracy we have established a corporate plutocracy.

But Martin Luther King would not despair; he would organize. If alive today he would have supported the Occupy and Black Lives Matter movements and would mobilize citizens in peaceful, non-violent action to agitate against existing conditions while building a vision for a more humane world.

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