Archive for Martin Luther King Jr.

Infographic: "A great democracy does not make it harder to vote than to buy an assault weapon.” Ours does.


bill clinton mlk march voting rights

President Clinton gave a terrific speech commemorating the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington which included this memorable sentence:

"A great democracy does not make it harder to vote than to buy an assault weapon.”

Ours does.

To give the point even more oomph, Think Progress posted this handy at-a-glance visual reminder of how wrongheaded the Republican party is in their efforts to slash voting rights while making it a snap to own a deadly weapon:

voting rights v gun rights

See? That way unregulated sales of firearms can continue without those pesky voters trying to step in to make some common sense changes. No I.D., no vote. No vote, no voice. No voice, no change.

Now if states would make official identification cards free and easily accessible, that would be swell. But the GOP would prefer that doesn't happen, because those without I.D.s tend to vote Democratic.

Thankfully, the Justice Department filed a lawsuit against the Texas voter ID law, and says that's just the first step of many.

Now back to Clinton's remarks. Think Progress:

As it turns out, Clinton is correct: individuals can buy assault weapons without showing identification in more than 30 states, while federal law prohibits states from allowing individuals to vote without some form of identification. In recent years, 13 states have passed stricter voter ID requirements and half a dozen more are considering voter suppression measures in the aftermath of the Supreme Court ruling invalidating a key section of the Voting Rights Act.

In fact, a ThinkProgress analysis found that anyone can obtain assault rifles from unlicensed dealers at gun shows or online without a background check in 39 states. Zero states allow people to vote without displaying identification.


VIDEO: Thank you Rachel Maddow, for allowing Mr. Clarence Jones to tell his story without interruption #MOW50


Clarence Jones MLK maddow

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This interview-- actually more of a stunning, riveting monolog by Clarence Jones-- touched me so deeply and was so fascinating that I watched it twice in a row. Mr. Jones has such a beautiful way with words and speaks with such humility and sensitivity, is such an important part of history, was so captivating, that I had to go back and re-savor every bit.

Thank you Rachel Maddow, for allowing Mr. Jones to tell his story without interruption. There are very few hosts who would do that, and very few guests who are as compelling and have the affect on me that he did.

I will not transcribe this video for you, because it wouldn't do justice to the segment or the emotion behind and value of his account.

What a day yesterday was. And how mind-boggling that there was ever-- and still is-- the need for civil rights/human rights marches.

People are people, equal in every way. It should go without saying that nobody should be diminished, belittled, persecuted, threatened, segregated or denied their rights because of their skin color, age, religion, rejection of religion, sexual orientation, height, weight, accent, heritage, gender, or any other distinguishing characteristic that I may have inadvertently overlooked.

That this is, or has ever been, an issue is absolutely baffling. We're all human beings, we all rely on each other to survive, and we have everything in common. Discriminating against our own makes zero sense. It's completely irrational.

To quote someone I never thought I'd ever quote ever in the history of ever:

ann romney stop it


Audio- Deadbeat Dad Ex-Rep. Joe Walsh Rewrites "I Have A Dream" Speech Teabagger Style


What Tommy said, almost. I'm not that forgiving.


VIDEO: Pres. Obama's FULL Speech, March On Washington's 50th Anniversary #MOW50 #AdvancingTheDream


Obama March on Washington 2013 2

ICYMI. It was damn good.

Obama March on Washington 2013


Live Streaming Video- President Obama Speaks at the Let Freedom Ring Ceremony 2:45p EDT




"Maybe that nice man in line behind me at the market has a white hood in the trunk of his car."


sandy banks

Sandy Banks is a columnist for the Los Angeles Times whose work I have posted about previously. For example:

She just wrote another compelling piece titled, "Evolving fight for equality: Remembering King and reflecting on what remains to be done."

Please read the entire thing, because I can't do it justice by offering a few excerpts to make her poignant and astute points. Banks takes a hard look at how far we've come on this 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, and how far we still have to go.

Short version: Character matters.

So when will I stop wondering whether the content of my character really matters more to strangers than the color of my skin?

Maybe when I'm not held accountable for the misdeeds of black people I have never met. [...]

It's hard to celebrate progress when we're busy name-calling, finger-pointing and shouting at one another. [...]

I've learned to consider online comments a minefield when I write about race. I cringe when I have to read them.

They tend to leave me angry and discouraged... maybe that nice man in line behind me at the market has a white hood in the trunk of his car. [...]

That same political muscle that helped elect a black president ought to be used to pressure legislators to support our interests: broader access to higher education, affordable healthcare, decent housing, an equitable justice system and stable, well-paying jobs. [...]

Solving those problems won't be as straightforward as eliminating poll taxes or integrating lunch counters. And the solutions won't come from men with stirring oratory and expensive suits.

The real leaders will be fathers who stick around and marry the mothers of their children; mothers who teach their children to respect themselves and one another; teachers, pastors, police officers, neighbors, professionals willing to reach back and mentor.

Please take the time to read the rest here.


Live Streaming Video- Let Freedom Ring Ceremony Commemorating the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom 11:00a EDT