Ah, if only all the colors could be united as beautifully as on a calico cat’s coat! Ms. Manx sighs. She can see that we humans still have a long way to go. Her ancestors had it figured out long ago that color doesn’t matter, that a cat’s a cat no matter what. She’s the product of merry mixing and mingling, and in fact, she wouldn’t be alive if her ancestors didn’t out-cross on a regular basis (remember that little treatise on Manx-cat genetics?) That’s why she thinks it important to gather up the links for Martin Luther King’s memorial day…because she, too, has a dream:
First up, the Socialist Worker, making the points that the major media won’t. Some of them are just shocking (imagine Lyndon Johnson, who pushed for the “Great Society”, referring to Dr. King privately as “that goddamn nigger preacher”!), others sad but not surprising (Dr. King’s revolutionary socialist views largely sanitized and downplayed…so all those uppity po’ folks, black, white and otherwise, won’t get any really unifying ideas that the crapitalists hate.) Ms. Manx thinks you could do a lot worse than to start right over there.
Then, our friends at Four Freedoms have noticed something which Ms. Manx thinks shouldn’t slip below anyone’s radar: that little girls are still being killed to preserve an unjust social order, one of racism and grossly unfair economic distribution. In other words: Dr. King’s mission is NOT accomplished. Which is why the words of his last speech matter all the more today.
Meanwhile, from the magazine Facing South, a progressive view (again, connecting this day to the shootings in Arizona) of another great speech given by Dr. King, shortly after he was stabbed by a deranged racist woman in 1957. He was able to distinguish between the hate and those misled by it. He called on people to look inside themselves first. Can we do the same, even in this age of teabagging?
Back again to the Socialist Worker, and some further insight into Dr. King’s last moments. Did you know he died supporting oppressed sanitation workers in their strike? That’s what his last day in Memphis was about: helping workers elevate themselves above the shit, literally. A humbling realization.
Pam’s House Blend has another good Dr. King speech on tap: one against the Vietnam war, plus thoughts on another civil rights struggle which is far from over: that of LGBT rights. Pam brings up Dr. King’s close ally in the struggle: Bayard Rustin, who happened to be gay. So much for the notion that gay rights and civil rights don’t go together! Equality is not an à la carte thing; you don’t get to pick and choose which equalities are worth fighting for. It’s all or none. Getting just one is meaningless if all the others don’t follow, for the simple reason that “some animals are more equal than others” is just one more wedge driven between people in the struggle for social justice. That’s why we all have to be dreamers along with Dr. King, never mind if you’re not black, or not gay, or not whatever. Never mind what you’re not. The only thing there’s no room for is another pair of blinders.
And finally, Ms. Manx would like to share her favorite Supertramp song (which she’s been listening to a lot lately, and which is very fitting, when you think about it), here performed by frontman Roger Hodgson with a full orchestra and choir:
Come on and dream, dream along…