|Marching through Detroit, 1963. Photo from http://voiceofdetroit.net/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Dr_-Martin-Luther-King-Jr_-leading-freedom-march-in-Detroit-1963-smaller.jpg|
Today marks the 46th year of Dr. Martin Luther King’s assassination, April 4th, 1968. Many events have transpired since that bullet rang out just a short time ago that requires an analysis of our current situation. Where does one start to understand the roots of the current crisis unless we compare and contrast what was then and what is now.
The attempts on Dr. King’s life are chronicled. His pursuit of equal access throughout the South was highlighted by his relentless fight to stop the violence against Blacks in communities, on the farms, in schools, at work, and in all phases of everyday life. In the grip of the Vietnam War, the country was torn by so many events, many of them aired on nightly national television. Our existences were filled with bombings, attack dogs, demonstrations, and terrible violence with no end in sight. Were those the “good old days”?
As we pause to remember the significance of this day, the new world reality has shaken us to our core. President George W. Bush, V.P. Dick Cheney, and the Koch Brothers tricked the country into a war that was based on an absolute lie. The World Trade Center bombings were attributed to Iraq and their allies, and after several months, said intelligence was proven to be untrue. The impact of such an outrageous series of events that touched the lives of countless Iraqis and Americans injured or killed because of this gross un-truth has been mostly excluded from the pages of history…but it happened.
So, over a 46 year span of time, our consciousness includes both ends of this spectrum. Dr. King was murdered because he wanted peace, freedom and equality for all. On April 4, 2014, we still can’t find peace, freedom for all is questionable, and we are still reeling from the abuse of the 1% who will not tolerate economic equality. How is corporate America working out for us, these days? Miss you, Dr. King.
Maureen D. Taylor
State Chairperson – MI Welfare Rights Org.