i'm not sure if my embedding this object worked. this speech was given in 1967. rice posted it to her blog yesterday in remembrance of martin luther king's assassination on april 4, 1968. it is his speech discussing his stance on the war in vietnam. she suggested that you listen and replace the words "vietnam" with "iraq" and "communism" with "terrorism." it's a 20 minute audio piece. give it a listen (if i embedded correctly).
the parts that struck me were:
- for every soldier killed in vietnam the US spent $500,000. yet for every poor person in the US, we spent $53, most of which went to salaries of people who were not poor. i can't imagine that isn't true today as well.
- he said he did not despair because "the arc of the moral universe is long but it bends toward justice."
- he quoted dante: "The hottest places in hell are reserved for those who in times of great moral crises maintain their neutrality."
- dissent does not mean disloyality. don't we hear a lot today about those who disagree with the war are unpatriotic? he said he was greatly disappointed in the US but that kind of disappointment can only be possible with great love.
the words really seem relevant to today's political climate. i wish my small post could be as elegant as his speech.
i don't talk much about politics on this blog. i like to reserve it for artwork. but, as you know, with my hiatus some other topics tend to push through to the forefront of my mind. when i'm sick i have a hard time listening to politics. but i am political. my husband and i met working for greenpeace. we spent two years knocking on people's doors, getting petitions signed and raising money. now my participation is lessened but at least i have a history.
there aren't that many great speeches anymore. obama speaks well, but it doesn't compare to MLK. i wonder why that is.