Sunday, January 16, 2011

The Martin Luther King You Still Don't See on TV

FAIR Blog | Blog Archive | The Martin Luther King You Still Don't See on TV

AP photo from a peace rally in 1967

You haven't heard the 'Beyond Vietnam' speech on network news retrospectives, but national media heard it loud and clear back in 1967--and loudly denounced it. Life magazine called it 'demagogic slander that sounded like a script for Radio Hanoi.' The Washington Post patronized that 'King has diminished his usefulness to his cause, his country, his people.'
In his last months, King was organizing the most militant project of his life: the Poor People's Campaign. He crisscrossed the country to assemble 'a multiracial army of the poor' that would descend on Washington--engaging in nonviolent civil disobedience at the Capitol, if need be--until Congress enacted a poor people's bill of rights. Reader's Digest warned of an 'insurrection.'
King's economic bill of rights called for massive government jobs programs to rebuild America's cities. He saw a crying need to confront a Congress that had demonstrated its 'hostility to the poor'--appropriating 'military funds with alacrity and generosity,' but providing 'poverty funds with miserliness.'
 Related: "Beyond Vietnam / A Time to Break Silence" April 4, 1967
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