Occupy articles invoking Civil Rights and Dr. King

Two recent articles suggesting linking between the Civil Rights movement and the Occupy Wall Street movement.

CNN featured an op-ed by The Rev. Jesse Jackson called “Occupy in memory of Martin Luther King”:

(The demonstrators) were scorned in the beginning. They had no clear demands. They were organized with no formal structure. They were squatting out in the rain, not allowed tents or bedding.

But they understood the value of nonviolence. In the face of pepper spray and police provocation, they stayed disciplined. As they were being dragged away to be arrested, they said to the police: “We are the 99%. We are fighting for your pensions. You should stand with us.”

They made no demands but their analysis was dead on. The wealthiest few are capturing all the rewards of growth in this society, while the large majority falls behind. Wall Street got bailed out, rescued without being reorganized, while homeowners were left to fend for themselves.

Inequality has reached levels not seen since before the Great Depression. With this kind of inequality — with the top 1% having as much income as the bottom 60%, according to the Campaign for America’s Future — the economy doesn’t work well. The rich turn to speculation. The middle class sinks. And the country suffers.

The Richmond Free Press featured a front page story on an event organized by Dr. Lance D. Watson called “Occupy the Dream”:

…part of a national day of protest by black clergy and congregations against societal ills similar to those previously enumerated by Occupy Richmond and the newly formed Occupy the Hood movement, which held its local kickoff rally to address inner-city problems a week earlier on South Side….

“It’s important to recognize you can have peaceful movements for change to honor the dream of Dr. King,” said Nate Bryant, a member of Faith and Family Church in Chesterfield who works for a home improvement company….

“In this hour the leadership of the African-American Christian church must arise and gather to proclaim our solidarity with the Occupy cause,” said Rev. Tyrone E. Nelson of Sixth Mount Zion Baptist Church in Richmond


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