Saturday, September 04, 2010

The madness continues; published in Glen Ellyn News, Daily Herald & Chicago Tribune

-----Original Message-----
From: Robert Peickert
Sent: September 04, 2010 7:27 AM
Subject: The madness continues; published in Glen Ellyn News, Daily Herald & Chicago Tribune
Date: Sat, 4 Sep 2010 12:12:56 +0000

As a lifelong free speech progressive, I had no problem with the Glenn Beck political revival of mostly white, anti-Obama tea partyers at the Lincoln Memorial on the 47th anniversary of Rev. Martin Luther King's "I have a dream" speech. Heck, compared with my 1978 support of the right of neo Nazis to march in Holocaust survivor populated Skokie, IL, the Beck rally was just a talk in the park.

I was taken aback, however, by tea party favorite Sarah Palin invoking Dr. King's legacy for endless support of our military, and by implication, our senseless and self destructive wars in the Middle East. She extolled her role as mother of an Iraq war vet and in supporting our military, told the crowd, "you have the same still spine and moral courage of ... Martin Luther King."

Had he dodged the assassin's bullet, what might an 81-year-old Dr. King have told the Beck-Palin patriots about our failed trillion-dollar exercises in empire. A year to the day before he blocked the bullet instead, King's second most famous speech, "Beyond Vietnam" at New York's Riverside Church, gives us a clue:

"Somehow this madness must cease ... I speak for those whose land is being laid to waste, whose homes are being destroyed, whose culture is being subverted. I speak for the poor of America who are paying the double price of smashed hopes at home, and death and corruption in ... I speak as a citizen of the world, for the world as it stands aghast at the path we have taken. The great initiative in this war is ours. The initiative to stop it must be ours."

After a speech like that, I suspect Beck and Palin would withdraw their invitation for King to speak at the next patriot parlay.

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