King’s Poor People’s Campaign

Poor People’s Campaign

In 1968, King and the SCLC organized the “Poor People’s Campaign” to address issues of economic justice. The campaign culminated in a march on Washington, D.C. demanding economic aid to the poorest communities of the United States. King traveled the country to assemble “a multiracial army of the poor” that would march on Washington to engage in nonviolent civil disobedience at the Capitol until Congress created a bill of rights for poor Americans.[90][91]


During the last year of his life Martin Luther King, Jr.’s popularity with mainline America was declining — both because of his opposition to the Viet Nam war but also because he had moved his goals on from equal voting rights to equal economic opportunity. At that time African Americans, other minorities, women were frequently denied access both to jobs and higher education.

I mention this because Obama is being attacked by McCain now precisely because he previously cited this denial of equal opportunity as one of the goals which the civil rights movement failed to achieve. McCain lives in his own world of privilege as the husband of a lady who inherited hundreds of millions from a beer company and he forgets or denies past history as those entering old age are prone to do.

“A war is just if there is no alternative, and the resort to arms is legitimate if they represent your last hope.” (Livy cited by Machiavelli)

Ed Kent 212-665-8535 (voice mail only) [blind copies]

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