A dishonor to Dr. King

Published: Tuesday, January 25, 2005 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, January 24, 2005 at 10:06 p.m.
For our nation to hear a speech by President George Bush honoring the late Dr. Martin Luther King is a very dangerous thing.
Bush's praise can easily mislead citizens into forgetting that Dr. King's life and work demonstrated the power of non-violent action to accomplish great social and political change on a vast scale.
By contrast, the life and work of George W. Bush proves once again that ordinary men and women can readily fall back into the pernicious habit of attempting social and political change by means of the unplanned but clearly predictable massive killing and death of thousands of innocent persons.
We do not honor Dr. King's memory when we permit a leader who launched a war that has thus far killed 100,000 Iraqi civilians and 1,300 courageous young Americans to stand up and praise King.
Dr. King hated war and poverty, as well as racism, and stood up for the rights of the impoverished and the downtrodden.
Throughout our nation, white power brokers have readily agreed for our African-American citizens to be encouraged to admire Dr. King in order to reduce their imagined propensity for violence.
It is time for a change of the hearts of America's most powerful men and women, away from the ready resort to a war that is sanctified by the excuse of "pre-emption" toward a full research and deployment of the non-violent weapons of peace.
It is time for the poorest and the most rejected of our citizens to lecture the rich and powerful among us, certainly including President Bush and the millions who aspire to be like him, as to the true meaning of the life and work of Dr. King, one of our truly greatest of all Americans.
Timothy Ray, Gainesville

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