Two years ago, on the occasion of Martin Luther King Day, I was asked
by several ZH readers to re-write Dr King's famous speech
in a satirical attack on Wall Street. Initially I declined for a number of
reasons, my deep respect for Dr King being one, aversion to hyperbole being the other.
Following the events of 2011, I no longer felt it was hyperbole to update
his speech to match the current state of national/economic affairs. So I did my first rewrite in January 2012.
I do not mean to trivialize the original goals of the civil rights movement. I was alive when Dr King was alive and barely old enough to understand his message.
However, I believe that the problem of racial injustice in the United
States has now further morphed into something different yet similar but far more sinister and nefarious: corruption driven economic injustice enforced by the crony corporatist boot.
Moreover, I don't think I need remind everyone that
Americans of color happen to be bearing the brunt of the current
economic crisis, which continues to deteriorate.
The measure of any epic historic document or speech is its timelessness, its ability to remain relevant and meaningful through the tides of time.
It is in this spirit that I originally
modified the speech and further edited it this weekend.
I would urge you to first relisten to Dr King's
original speech as I have, and
consider what has changed and how the speech remains relevant as
ever to each and every one of us.
It is remarkable how little needs to be changed to reflect the tragedy of the situation we now face.
I HAVE DREAM (SLIGHT RETURN)
I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as
the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation.
In 1776, the founding fathers, in whose symbolic shadows we stand
today, signed the Declaration of Independence. This momentous decree
came as a great beacon light of hope to millions of Americans who had
been seared in the flames of withering political and economic
injustice. It came as a joyous daybreak to end the long night of their
political and economic captivity.
But almost 250 years later, ordinary Americans all of all color are still not
free. Two hundred and fifty years later, the life of ordinary Americans is sadly
crippled by the manacles a government that is operating under the credo "by the corporation
for the corporation", rather than "by the people for the people."
Two hundred and fifty years later, countless
Americans are living in a lonely island of poverty, struggling to
get by on government handouts, in the midst of a vast ocean of obscene prosperity in many instances subsidized by their own government.
Two hundred and fifty years later, Men women and
children of all color are languishing in the corners of a
privileged society controlled by the few and find themselves an economic exile
in their own land. And so we've come here today to dramatize a
In a sense we've come to our nation's capital to cash a check. When
the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the
Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a
promissory note to which every American was to fall heir. This note
was a promise that all men, yes, black men as well as white men, would
be guaranteed the "unalienable Rights" of "Life, Liberty and the
pursuit of Happiness." It is obvious today that America has defaulted
on this promissory note. Instead of honoring this sacred obligation,
Washington DC together with it's financial enablers on Wall Street,
have given the American people a bad
check, a check which has come back marked "Too Big To Fail."
But we refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt. We
refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great
vaults of economic opportunity of this nation. And so, we've come to cash this
check, a check that will give us upon demand the riches of opportunity and the security of economic justice.
We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the
fierce urgency of Now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of
cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is
the time to make real the promises of democracy. Now is the time to
rise from the dark and desolate valley of "moral hazard" to the sunlit
path of productive capitalism. Now is the time to save our nation from the
quicksands of chronic bailouts and "Too Big to Fail" to the time
proven solid rock of
creative destruction and economic opportunity. Now is the time to make
economic justice a
reality for all of our children.
It would be fatal for the nation to overlook the urgency of the
moment. This sweltering summer of economic discontent will not pass
until there is an invigorating autumn of transparent economic growth
and opportunity. Nineteen sixty-three was not an end, but a beginning. And
those who hope that it was just the Negro who needed to blow off steam
and will now be content will have a rude awakening if the nation
continues to allow Wall Street and much of corporate America to operate "business as unsual."
will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until Americans are
returned their citizenship rights. The whirlwinds of revolt will
continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright day
of justice emerges.
But there is something that I must say to my people, who stand on the
warm threshold which leads into the palace of justice: In the process
of gaining our rightful place, we must not be guilty of wrongful
deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking
from the cup of bitterness and hatred. We must forever conduct our
struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. We must not
allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again
and again, we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical
force with soul force. The marvelous new militancy which is engulfing America
must not lead us to a distrust of all wealth, for many of our successful brothers in business, as evidenced by their presence here today, have come
to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny. And they
have come to realize that their economic success is inextricably bound to our success.
We cannot walk alone.
And as we walk, we must make the pledge that we shall always march ahead.
We cannot turn back.
There are those who are asking, "When
will you be satisfied?"
We can never be satisfied as long as outspoken Americans
are the victims of the unspeakable horrors of police brutality.
We can never be satisfied as long as Americans must live in a state of constant intimidation by
a rogue state that has no respect for the basic human right of privacy.
We can never be satisified as long as those brave men and women who endeavor to expose the corruption of the state are openly intimidated and persecuted.
We can never be satisfied as long as even a single American must live in fear of death by drone.
We can never be satisfied as long as our country continues to be pillaged by corporate greed and corruption.
We can never be satisfied as long as Americans individually and as a people are
forced to struggle under the chains of vastly unsustainable debt.
never be satisfied
as long as our children are stripped of their self-hood and robbed of
their dignity by pepper spraying goons protecting signs stating: "Stay
on the curb and keep of the grass."
Not only can we not be satisfied as long as a Negro in
Mississippi cannot vote but equally as long as every person on Main
Street USA is forced to accept that his or her worth less than those in the
privileged club of billionaire looters, corporate wards of the state and digital robber barons.
No, no, we are not
satisfied, and we
will not be satisfied until "justice rolls down like waters, and
righteousness like a mighty stream."
I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of great trials
and tribulations. Some of you have come fresh from narrow jail cells.
And some of you have come from areas where your quest -- quest for
economic freedom and opportunity left you battered by the storms of
persecution and staggered
by the winds of police brutality. You have been the veterans of
creative suffering. Continue to work with the faith that unearned
suffering is redemptive.
Go back to Mississippi, go back to Alabama,
go back to South Carolina, go back to Georgia, go back to Louisiana,
go back to downtown New York City, Oakland, Boston, Detroit and LA and
the rotting housing tracts of Michigan, California, Ohio, Massachusetts, Nevada, Florida and Arizona, knowing
that somehow this situation can and will be changed.
Let us not wallow in the valley of despair, I say to you today, my friends.
And so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I
still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.
I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the
true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident,
that all men, not corporations or banks but men, are created equal."
I have a dream today!
And when this happens, when we allow freedom to ring, when we let it ring
from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city,
we will be able to speed up that day when all of God's children, black
men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will
be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro
Free at last! Free at last!
Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!
Just check out Obama's new drone
"In The Land Of The Free" it is flown
Nothing will save
"The Home Of The Brave"
Tyrannical forces have grown
The Limerick King
For the record, I think Dr King would have been absolutely apalled by the hypocrisy this moron and his cohorts, one of whom filed a Grant of Immunity for war crimes against George W. Bush, Richard Cheney, Condoleezza Rice, Colin Powell, Paul Wolfowitz, and Donald Rumsfeld just last week.
So Manning gets 35 years and they all get immunity.
And now, yet again, the public is being primed to go along with sending young (99 percenter) Americans to put their lives in harm's way in yet another misplaced foreign adventure.
That is the sweet taste of justice in today's America.
Too Big To Fail indeed...
REMEMBER THE GUANTANAMO!
And now presenting Card Bored Al Sharpton...