Fifty Years On, MLK’s Call for Economic Justice Rings True

Leave a comment

Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was gunned down fifty years ago today on April 4, 1968. It was a turning point of the twentieth century, marking an ending and a beginning. It was the end of one phase of the Black Freedom struggle, and the beginning of one of the most volatile periods of U.S. politics since the Civil War.

 

"King was arguably the greatest progressive leader of the past century."(Photo: AP/Gerry Broome)

Image: Common Dreams

Dr. King was a Baptist minister, a prophetic visionary, a great coalition builder, a moral pillar, a polarizing figure, a movement strategist, a practitioner of nonviolence, a radical reformer. King was arguably the greatest progressive leader of the past century.

One the one hand, King’s life and his assassination seem distant after five decades. At the same time, it is haunting to know that King could be alive today had he lived on. He was only 39 when he was killed.

Perhaps it is a natural obsession to wonder what King could have been had he lived. What would he do today? What would he say about Trump? How would he respond to the issues of the day? Truth is, we don’t know. But we can learn urgent lessons from his life’s work.

More from Common Dreams

Posted by Libergirl

Advertisements

Billy Graham and the Gospel of Fear

Leave a comment

Billy Graham was a preacher man equally intent on saving souls and soliciting financial support for his ministry. His success at the former is not subject to proof and his success at the latter is unrivaled. He preached to millions on every ice-free continent and led many to his chosen messiah.

Graham also left behind a United States government in which religion plays a far greater role than before he intruded into politics in the 1950s. The shift from secular governance to “In God We Trust” can be laid squarely at this minister’s feet.

Graham’s message was principally one of fear…fear of a wrathful god…

More from CounterPunch News

Posted by The NON-Conformist

Hiram Rhodes Revels

1 Comment

Image: Wikipedia

Hiram Rhodes Revels (September 27, 1827– January 16, 1901) was a minister in the African Methodist Episcopal Church(AME), and a politician. He was the first person of color to serve in the United States Senate, and in the U.S. Congress overall. He represented Mississippi in 1870 and 1871 during Reconstruction.

During the American Civil War, he helped organize two regiments of the United States Colored Troops and served as a chaplain.

Revels was born a free man in Fayetteville, North Carolina, to free parents of African and European ancestry. He was tutored by a black woman for his early education. In 1838 he went to live with his older brother, Elias B. Revels, in Lincolnton, North Carolina, and was apprenticed as a barber in his brother’s shop. After Elias Revels died in 1841, his widow Mary transferred the shop to Hiram before she remarried.

Revels attended the Union County Quaker Seminary in Indiana, and studied at a black seminary in Ohio.

In 1845 Revels was ordained as a minister in the African Methodist Episcopal Church (AME); he served as a preacher and religious teacher throughout the Midwest: in Indiana, Illinois, Ohio, Tennessee, Missouri, and Kansas. “At times, I met with a great deal of opposition,” he later recalled. “I was imprisoned in Missouri in 1854 for preaching the gospel to Negroes, though I was never subjected to violence.

He did additional religious studies from 1856 to 1857 at Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois. He became a minister in a Methodist Episcopal Church in Baltimore, Maryland, where he also served as a principal for a black high school.

As a chaplain in the United States Army, Revels helped recruit and organize two black Union regiments during the Civil War in Maryland and Missouri. He took part at the battle of Vicksburg in Mississippi.

More from Wikipedia

Posted by Libergirl

Christian TV host asks God for ‘military takeover’ of Obama’s presidency

Leave a comment

Christian TV host asks God for ‘military takeover’ of Obama’s presidency (via Raw Story )

A Christian TV host this week called on God to consider a “military takeover” of President Barack Obama’s government because it could be the only way to save the country from tyranny. On his Monday Internet broadcast, Morning Star TV’s Rick…

Posted by the NON-Conformist

The Pledge of Allegiance and Fascism

1 Comment

Image: enwikipedia.org

I wrote in a couple of blog posts about bloggers and journalists and the differences between the two. For this reason I like blogging. The 4th of July was just upon us. This is when bloggers can say things that are true whereas journalists can’t without fear of blow back. In this post I want to deal with the pledge of allegiance and fascism. After the ruling on the Affordable Care Act a.k.a Obamacare, Repubs lost their minds; literally. Some of them started throwing around the word fascism as if saying it three times the candy man would appear. That’s as foolish as the “idea” of fascism itself. I listened to their arguments and I was confused especially by one certain person who I can’t mention by name till she runs for president. Anyways, she was throwing the word around without “any” explanation of what she meant by it. This is what bothers me most, people in positions of authority shouldn’t allow guests to speak  frivolously because it may sound good. That’s fine in the interim but in the long run it can hurt one’s credibility.

We have to ask the question, what is fascism? Fascism is difficult to pin-point or define as it mostly deals with an ideology. It could be explained as an illiberal regime type, insofar as it denies the significance and rights of the individual and expects citizens to function together in a corporate fashion for the glory of the state. Fascism is defined as much by what it opposes as well as what it supports, it is anti-modern, anti-rationality, anti-democratic, and vehemently anti-communist. Fascism is also militaristic and espouses and imperialistic, expressionistic foreign policy and corporatism.

At a forward glance, this definition refers to both ruling parties in the United States. As a free-thinker as well as moderate/volunteerist, our political system is corrupted from both sides. I don’t think the founding Fathers planned for our country to be controlled from a Left/Right paradigm. Both sides want equal control to rule and put policies in as they please to control the minds and hearts of individuals. Indoctrination starts in schools beginnig with the worship of the state.

The Pledge of Allegiance was created by Francis Bellamy, a Baptist Minister as well as a Christian socialist. He first pinned the pledge in a magazine entitled The Youth’s Companion 1892. Before this he sold flags to schools. During that time he sold as many as 26,000 flags to schools but when the flag business began to dry up he started to speak to school superintendents to promote his new idea: the pledge. The program began around the flag being raised followed by the pledge. A controversy arose with the induction of the Bellamy salute. He was the first to champion what became popularized by Mussolini and later by Hitler. Hitler copied almost verbatim  from Mussolini down to the uniforms; so much for originality. The salute was later changed with hand over the heart gesture. Eisenhower later encouraged congress to add “Under God.” Because of Bellamy’s socialist views and his belief  in the rights of individuals and of equal distribution of economic resources, he was force to leave his church in Boston. He said his beliefs had always come from the teachings of Jesus and the Bible.

Political pundits decry socialism but, again, isn’t all government socialism? Don’t both sides want to control certain parts of the economy or all of it? While I believe Bellamy had a different idea the flag worship and pledge of allegiance is used to indoctrinate young kids to believe in an idea,  it’s a form of worship that should only be made for the creator.  America is no different from any other country that proposes worship of the state. People are free to do as they please but it doesn’t make one more patriotic. I believe it makes one more beholden to a failed idea.

The NON-Conformist

%d bloggers like this: