President Obama said yesterday that Dr. Martin Luther King would want “us” (whomever that may be) to “challenge the excesses of Wall Street without demonizing those who work there.”
Talk about raising more questions than you answer! Let us ask:
1. For what reason should the proscription against “demonizing” apply to Operation Wall Street and not to the President’s own speechwriters? Through their writing, the President himself regularly demonizes black parents for their allegedly obese children, their poor choice of breakfast foods, and other sins while he’s never commented at all about the failed child-rearing skills of wealthy white parents like, say, Al and Tipper Gore. Isn’t this kind of selective, exaggerated criticism what is usually meant by “demonizing”? Another sign that this is the President demonizing is that he has never publicly dealt with the corporations that create and market the breakfast foods and other obestiy-inducing agents.
2. What evidence is there that the Occupy Wall Street forces have demonized Wall Street workers? Or even Wall Street owners? This is, after all, the President putting words in a martyr’s mouth to form an accusastion he apparently isn’t willing to voice directly. So let’s have some facts in play here…not just innuendo against those whom the President would love to condemn if there weren’t so goddamned many votes at stake.
3. Why does the President refuse to recognize that OWS regularly reaches out to workers on Wall Street? It’s not workers who have been subject to their criticism, ridicule and anger. It’s owners.
4. Why doesn’t the President follow OWS in relentlessly describing in plain language what Wall Street owners do and the damage it causes?
5. Why isn’t demonization of the working class by Wall Street owners and other powerful people equally subject to what I suppose we might refer to as The King Rule?
6. For that matter, if the Occupy Wall Street group must obey The King Rule what about the President himself, whose statements attempting to rationalize the assassination of Osama bin Laden and the murder-by-drone of Anwar Al-Awlaki certainly smack of demonization much more than anything anyone associated with OWS has said.
7. Does President Obama believe that more than 30 months of supporting the Wall Street ownership class justifies his putting words in Dr. Martin Luther King’s mouth? On what basis does he arrogate to himself the right to sideswipe an entirely non-violent movement to curry sympathy–or even empathy–for the Wall Street scoundrels who occupy so many posts in his cabinet?
8. If we were going to reference Dr. Martin Luther King in regard to these events would it not be better to recall what King actually said, for instance in his “Where Do We Go From Here” speech to the SCLC in 1967:
“Let us be dissatisfied until America will no longer have high blood pressure of creeds and an anemia of deeds. Let us be dissatisfied until the tragic walls that separate the outer city of wealth and comfort from the inner city of poverty and despair shall be crushed by the battering rams of the fires of justice. Let us be dissatisfied until they who live on the outskirts of Hope are brought into the metropolis of daily security. Let us be dissatisfied until slums are cast into the junk heap of history and every family will live in a decent, sanitary home. Let us be dissatisfied until the dark yesterdays of segregated schools will be
transformed into the bright tomorrows of quality integrated education.”