I am not at all religious but I say Glory, Glory Hallelujah to Reverend Barber. Jesus helped poor people. He never advocated wars. The system is broken and no one promoting the status quo will fix it. While many praise Martin Luther King’s name once a year, this man and his Poor People’s campaign is truly carrying on the work of MLK.
Here’s an except. If you agree with Rev. Barber, please watch the rest of his interview.
“A National Call Revival audit says there are actually 140 million poor and low-wealth people in this country. Seventy-three percent of them are women and children. That’s 43.5 percent of all of the people in this country are poor. Are poor. Upwards of 250,000 people die every year from poverty. Incomes—and, no, it’s no longer true that if you work, you’re coming out of poverty. In some places, you’d have to work 99 hours at a minimum-wage job just to be able to get a basic apartment.
So we have an impoverished democracy right now. It didn’t just start with Trump, but it certainly is being exacerbated by Trump. Too often, we have seen a political dialogue, a narrative, for the last 40 years, that has literally removed poverty from any of our political discussions. Politicians talk about the middle class and military, and not about poverty. And we have this impoverished democracy.
On top of that, we have, Amy, the systemic racism, particularly around the works—not the words of racism, like Roseanne Barr saying something, but the works of racism—voter suppression that hurts the poor, gerrymandering that hurts the poor and allows people to get elected who use racialized voter suppression to get elected. And once they get elected, they pass policies that hurt mostly the poor. All of the states that have racialized voter suppression since 2010 have elected statehouses and congresspeople and senators that are against funding for the poor, that are against living wages, that have tried to block healthcare, that have passed tax cuts that are devastating to the programs that help the poor.
So we have an impoverished democracy, which is why we have to have massive, nonviolent, moral fusion civil disobedience, massive voter mobilization among the poor, and massive power building among the poor, if we’re going to turn this nation around.”