Wednesday, January 19, 2005

"Beyond Vietnam" - The REAL Martin Luther King

Dear Editor,

As principal organizer of this year's Martin Luther King Celebration, I just want to thank all the wonderful members of our community for helping to make it happen. If everyone so faithfully followed Dr. King’s message of service to others, the world would be a much better place. I have to thank the Post Star, as well, for its promotion of the event.

However, that said, Tuesday’s article on the event forgot the $1100 dollars raised for tsunami relief. I counted 240 in attendance and Anne Kumar counted 150? The presence of Mayor Regan and Senator Little went unreported. I thought it truly wonderful that they joined with us to celebrate this man that many in the social justice community consider to be the greatest American to ever live.

King’s speech, “Beyond Vietnam” was played. In it, he calls war a machinery of greed, destruction and hate and calls the collective silence of America’s religious leadership at the time tantamount to betrayal. He says that every religion advocates the principles of peace and love, not war.

Our speaker, Professor Steven Breyman, pointed out how relevant this speech still is, given our misguided and unconstitutional invasion of Iraq. The media always labels Dr. King as the “fallen civil rights leader”, ignoring his unbelievable bravery in coming out against the Vietnam War. It has often been concluded that his stance on Vietnam is what got him killed. Maybe the Post Star could honor this national hero by reprinting his incredible speech?

The article didn’t mention “Independent Media: In a Time of War” either. In the film, we are shown many examples of bias and propaganda in American television coverage of the war. I know several reporters stayed for the film and discussion, afterwards. Why not ask them to write about it?

Matt Funiciello

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