Monday, January 17, 2011

The content of our character

"We as a nation must undergo a radical revolution of values... when machines and computers, profit motives and property rights, are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, materialism and militarism are incapable of being conquered." Martin Luther King, Jr. April 4, 1967

I am not "celebrating" the 25th anniversary of the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday because it's a chilling reminder why Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. didn't live to see this day. This time every year, pundits and white Americans engage in an exercise I’ll call "See I ain't prejudice", because they attend a Martin Luther King Jr. "unity" event or quote selected quotes from his speeches to make us forget Martin Luther King, Jr. was murdered in Memphis TN just because he tried to to make the world a better place for everybody. Some of the same people who hated what Martin Luther King, Jr. died for in 1968 are giving the public facade they were always in line with his principles, but just for one day.

Four decades after the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr, the violence is still here, aimed at liberals and Democrats.
They’ve been gunned down in Tucson, shot to death at the Pentagon, and blown away at the Holocaust Museum, as well as in Wichita, Knoxville, Pittsburgh, Brockton, and Okaloosa County, Florida.

Total body count for these incidents: 19 dead, 26 wounded
The day after the King Holiday, House republicans will make good on their promise to vote to repeal health care reform, hoping their followers don't know the difference between voting to repeal health care reform and actually repealing health care reform. The gop is actually doing something I wish the democratic party would do, which is take a stand on principle, sending a signal to their base they are willing to fight even if they loose.
Republicans effectively have three choices when it comes to health care. First, they could simply give up on repealing the entirety of the law, and will instead focus on incremental, fiscally-responsible changes. Second, Republicans could simply argue that they find the Affordable Care Act so offensive, they just don't care about the effects repeal would have on the deficit.

Third, GOP officials could just start making stuff up, and hope that reporters and voters can't tell the difference. As Krugman explains in his piece, this is the preferred avenue for the new House majority.

Let us renew our commitment to the radical revolution of values for which Dr.
King gave his life as we turn to the realities of current life. ~Bill Quigley for Buzzflash at Truthout

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