Saturday, 24 June 2017

The Poor People’s Campaign

quote [ Dr. King said the only transformative force that could really, fully transform America would be for poor whites and blacks and brown people and working people to come together. ]

This is the right direction. Transcript in extended.

Transcript of video:
HARI SREENIVASAN: We hear a lot about how divided our country is along many lines: race, class and especially now our politics.

But in our next Race Matters conversation, NewsHour special correspondent Charlayne Hunter-Gault talks with the co-authors of “The Third Reconstruction: How a Moral Movement Is Overcoming the Politics of Division and Fear” about their success in bridging those divides.

CHARLAYNE HUNTER-GAULT: In recent weeks, Reverend William Barber stepped down from heading the NAACP in North Carolina to focus on what he calls a national moral revival, updating the Poor People’s Campaign started by the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. that linked the civil rights struggle for African-Americans to demands for equality for all poor people.

REV. WILLIAM BARBER II, Repairers of The Breach: There was this thing, if you will, called the white Southern strategy.

And the goal of it was undermine black and white fusion coalitions. What we’re going to do is, we’re going to figure out a way to talk that makes poor whites think that they’re losing because black people and brown people are gaining.

And what you do in that is, you make poor whites, who should be allies with poor blacks, think that their problem, their poverty is being caused because black and brown people are acquiring something or taking something from them.

CHARLAYNE HUNTER-GAULT: So, what led you to try and bridge that gap, and what made you want to do that?

REV. WILLIAM BARBER II: Dr. King said — back in the ’60s, he said, the only transformative force that could really, fully transform America would be for poor whites and blacks and brown people and working people to come together.

CHARLAYNE HUNTER-GAULT: Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove conversion began when he first met Reverend Barber. Before that, he had been a young conservative who had worked both for the Moral Majority, a political group associated with the Christian right and the Republican Party, and also for conservative South Carolina Senator Strom Thurmond.

What was your own attitude about poor black people and black people in general?

JONATHAN WILSON-HARTGROVE, School for Conversion: So, I was raised in the Southern Baptist Church in a sundown town. Until 1983, there was a sign at the edge of our town that told black people they weren’t welcome there after the sun went down.

CHARLAYNE HUNTER-GAULT: I have read that you called yourself a racist in those days.

JONATHAN WILSON-HARTGROVE: Sure. I didn’t know I was a racist, but Reverend Barber helped me see that I was racist, and, more importantly, that my racism was getting in the way of loving Jesus, which is what I really wanted to do.

CHARLAYNE HUNTER-GAULT: Wilson-Hartgrove first heard Reverend Barber some 20 years ago at a meeting called by the North Carolina governor.

Reverend Barber delivered a motivational speech to a gathering of young people. Wilson-Hartgrove was moved by what Barber said and began to understand how racism had been used as a tool to divide. Growing up poor, Wilson-Hartgrove had never before realized what he had in common with poor black people.

JONATHAN WILSON-HARTGROVE: We were taught to believe that there were people who were poor because they chose to be poor. And that narrative kept us from seeing the way that our religion was being used to pit us against other people.

CHARLAYNE HUNTER-GAULT: Reverend Barber has even taken his message into Appalachia, and up to Mitchell County, North Carolina.

REV. WILLIAM BARBER II: Mitchell County, North Carolina is a place where, in 1920, all the black people were run out of town over the accusation of a black man raping a white woman. It’s 97 percent white, 77 percent Republican.

CHARLAYNE HUNTER-GAULT: Wary, but undeterred, Reverend Barber seized on the invitation of this rural white church.

REV. WILLIAM BARBER II: I went in and talked to them for about an hour.

And I said, listen, this legislature just cut, denied Medicaid expansion. There are 1,000 people in this county that would get health care, and they can’t be black, because there are no black people are up here. They cut funding for public education. You are losing teachers here. And they have to be white.

Now, you voted for some of the people because of what they told you they stood on prayer in school and abortion and homosexuality, but let’s look at what they are doing, and how it is hurting you.

CHARLAYNE HUNTER-GAULT: So, basically, what you did was to talk to them about the things that they had in common. And it registered. It permeated their consciousness.

REV. WILLIAM BARBER II: You talk to people honestly, you talk to them about what it means to be a human being, and you show them the hypocrisy. You know, you show them how they’re being fooled, if you will, that people are saying, I care about your best interests, but those people are actually putting in place policies that are hurting everybody.

CHARLAYNE HUNTER-GAULT: What strategy did you use to reach people who had been brought up like Jonathan? What did you do to convince them that this wasn’t right?

REV. WILLIAM BARBER II: I know that many of my white evangelical friends or many African-Americans who were bought into this kind of a public engagement-type faith really have been introduced to — and I say this sorrowfully — a form of heresy and a form of theological malpractice.

To try to suggest that Jesus was just about a little prayer, a little preaching and a little worship and a little charity — the very Jesus that white evangelicals claim to lift up was a brown-skinned Palestinian Jew whose first sermon was challenging the economic exploitation of the empire.

CHARLAYNE HUNTER-GAULT: Reverend Barber and Wilson-Hartgrove have been working together in a multiracial movement known as Moral Monday, weekly protests held on the grounds of the North Carolina state capitol in Raleigh aimed at helping citizens understand their common interest around such issues as health care, voting rights and immigration, also how they are affected by these and other governmental policies, regardless of race or class.

REV. WILLIAM BARBER II: When we went into the first Moral Monday in a diverse role as clergy, investment, first, some people laughed. They said we were a nuisance.

But then they started seeing more people come, and they looked diverse. They said, that’s my teacher getting arrested, that’s my doctor, that’s a black man and white man walking together. That’s a Jew and a rabbi and a Christian. What’s going on?

So, people began to think — even though they didn’t get arrested, they would come.

CHARLAYNE HUNTER-GAULT: The Moral Monday movement is the foundation for Reverend Barber’s latest project that he intends to take to some 25 states.

JONATHAN WILSON-HARTGROVE: What can be learned from our experience is that white people need to talk about race honestly. We need to say, of course we’re racist. This is a country that’s built on white supremacy.

You know, it’s not like it’s a personal failing. I inherited this. Racism is about structures that pass on what we inherited, right? Inequalities that we inherited are written into these structures. And when we help white people think about that, I think we’re making it possible to form alliances that we haven’t been able to form.

REV. WILLIAM BARBER II: And black people can’t be afraid of that.

We have to look back in history. When black and white people came together right after the Civil War, we fundamentally changed this country. When black and white and brown people and Jews and Christians came together in the civil rights movement, it was transformative.

CHARLAYNE HUNTER-GAULT: Are you at all optimistic that the kinds of things that you’re doing are going to make a difference in ending racism?

JONATHAN WILSON-HARTGROVE: I think racism is the fundamental challenge to the American project. This is a country that was built on the original sin of race-based chattel slavery. It is how the, you know, concentrated capital in this country from the very beginning has maintained power.

But I don’t think that the future of America is possible without dealing with it.

REV. WILLIAM BARBER II: I’m hopeful. Optimism is a different thing.

I believe we have to be the kind of what I call moral dissenters, moral defibrillators who shock the nation. But we also are seeing something in the wind. You have white people marching with Black Lives Matter.

I had a friend of mine who’s a Sikh, and she put it like this. Quickly, she said, a tomb is dark and a womb is dark, but there’s a difference. A tomb is death, a womb is possibility. It’s dark now.

But if we push and push together and come together, I think this is a birthing moment.

CHARLAYNE HUNTER-GAULT: For the PBS NewsHour, I’m Charlayne Hunter-Gault.
[SFW] [politics] [+7 Good]
[by 7@11:51amGMT]


bbqkink said @ 4:36pm GMT on 24th Jun
There is nothing new about this.

"EV. WILLIAM BARBER II, Repairers of The Breach: There was this thing, if you will, called the white Southern strategy.

And the goal of it was undermine black and white fusion coalitions. What we’re going to do is, we’re going to figure out a way to talk that makes poor whites think that they’re losing because black people and brown people are gaining."


President Lyndon Baines Johnson, who grew up in the South and understood the politics of racism from the inside, saw it in part as a ploy to divide and conquer.

President Lyndon B. Johnson once said, "If you can convince the lowest white man he's better than the best colored man, he won't notice you're picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he'll empty his pockets for you."
lilmookieesquire said @ 6:40pm GMT on 24th Jun
I think what's new is the demographics, social economics and maybe knowledge base of possible coalitions and maybe a sympathetic older generation that went through similar experiences.
bbqkink said @ 6:53pm GMT on 24th Jun
Oh, I thing the numbers have changed...just not the strategy.
7 said @ 8:49pm GMT on 24th Jun [Score:1 Funny]
It's ancient, but I think its time has come to have real potential.
bbqkink said @ 9:19pm GMT on 24th Jun
Didn't see it until after I read your comment...well done...I'm going to leave it..
sanepride said @ 4:45pm GMT on 24th Jun
There's a truly great, hopeful vision here, but I wonder even if we had a leader with the skills and charisma of Dr. King and the organizational abilities of the 60's SCLC, would it be enough to overcome the persistent influence of the modern-day media noisemakers. How do you open the minds of people whose worldviews are exclusively shaped by Fox News and Breitbart?
7 said @ 8:48pm GMT on 24th Jun [Score:3 Underrated]
I don’t know the answer to your question, sanepride, and no one does. This is just a direction to work towards, a redirection of focus, a simpler platform. One thing is pretty certain, the poor are going to be a growing demographic. They might not have the financial lobbying power, but they could easily have control of the vote. I’m sure many people that may be classified as middle-class would not be opposed to be labeled poor, in some respects. This is probably the wisest direction for Democrats, or whatever independent party, given the current state of affairs. Whether it is possible to be successful is not the question. The question is whether there is a better angle from which to attack, and I think the answer to that is no. If it is impossible to win using the best strategy, then what are you to do, give up?

I’m sorry you’re catching so much flak from my post. You can be unpleasant sometimes, but we all can, and I think you catch a bit more than your fair share here. There’s a lack of independence here I find a little disturbing. Maybe part of the reason I haven’t been here for a while.
sanepride said @ 9:25pm GMT on 24th Jun
Thanks, I appreciate that. Really this a good and important post and sorry about the digression. Unfortunately, as pronounced by the Site Administrator, I apparently have nothing more to contribute here. Not sure this is related to the 'lack of independence' you mention, but there does seem to be a homogeneity of tolerable opinion.
steele said @ 5:46pm GMT on 24th Jun [Score:2 Underrated]
You stop questioning whether it's possible and get to fucking work.
sanepride said @ 5:49pm GMT on 24th Jun
It is possible, maybe even essential, to do both y'know.
steele said @ 6:02pm GMT on 24th Jun [Score:1 Funsightful]
But you're not, are you? You're our own personal C3P0, telling everybody the odds they don't want to hear, minus any form of useful accuracy.
sanepride said @ 6:12pm GMT on 24th Jun
A broad judgment on your part. First, my comment was a question, not a pronouncement. And really a how to question. Second, other than assumptions based on your interpretation of my question, what makes you think I haven't 'gotten to work', whatever that actually means?
lilmookieesquire said @ 6:18pm GMT on 24th Jun
Right? I mean Steele didn't even post a review.
C18H27NO3 said[1] @ 6:23pm GMT on 24th Jun [Score:1 Funsightful]
Forget steele, 7 didn't even round out the post with reviews and an interpretive angle. Go figure. When posts are rapid fire with 0-5 comments each, we really need to start to enforce rules for posting, eh?
steele said @ 6:30pm GMT on 24th Jun
If only there were some sort of moderation system in place for you all to do exactly that. :D
sanepride said @ 6:24pm GMT on 24th Jun
Actually yes he did. He posted a review of me.
Except in this case, he seems to have just skimmed the book.
But at the end of the day, everyone's entitled to their opinion. Right?
lilmookieesquire said @ 6:41pm GMT on 24th Jun
In the original sandscrit I suppose.
steele said @ 6:25pm GMT on 24th Jun
Is it tho? 8 years of you making excuses for Obama and trash talking efforts to hold him accountable, another year of telling everybody (you like him so much, but!) Bernie can't win, and then another 4 months of telling people to get in line for Hillary. All the while ending up completely blindsided by a Trump presidency that plenty of people here warned you was coming. This is status quo for you, man. This is why people were calling you a defeatist for 6 months. Because while other people do and try, you shit on them, you question the plausibility of their efforts, while offering nothing. You're a walking operative for the opposition, you undermine everything you claim to be for that interrupts the status quo. Which means you're likely one self destructive, contrarian dude, or you're being pretty disingenuous around here with your views.
sanepride said @ 6:46pm GMT on 24th Jun
Harsh dude.
Why should I bother trying to counter this? Or even posting here at all?
I'll conclude here just by noting that a few of the more trollish types here have complained that being downmodded by the community shuts down debate. True or not, I kind of feel like, as the administrator of this site, with a tirade like this, responding ultimately to what seems like a reasonable question, your are shutting down debate, or at least my point of view.
Good day to you sir.
bbqkink said[3] @ 6:57pm GMT on 24th Jun
There are only so many amigos... and the ratting system is the reason this place works but if you don't agree with something it is not -1 old... that is trolling. If its bad porn get rid of it..make it disappear. If you don't agree say so. or move on. Just like this conversation.
If something goes against my beliefs it is not -1 repost.
sanepride said @ 7:14pm GMT on 24th Jun
Hell I don't care about the rating system. Downmods don't bother me, especially the pissy ones.
But then again, when the Guy In Charge makes a special effort to dismiss your entire point of view, supported by his loyal posse, that sends a chilling message. Not that I'm one to bow to the will of authority figures, it's more of a 'fuck it, why even bother'.
arrowhen said @ 9:36pm GMT on 24th Jun [Score:1 Funsightful]
No one is In Charge here. Just because steele runs the website doesn't mean his opinions carry any more weight than yours, mine, or anyone else's. I applaud your anarchic spirit, but do you really need to invent imaginary authority figures to oppose when there are already so many real ones out there?
sanepride said @ 2:11am GMT on 25th Jun
That's a nice sentiment, yet steele's tirade above comes across to me as pretty fucking authoritarian. If I responded by telling him he's an arrogant, judgemental prick whose giant brain is so convinced it's always right that his best counter to a reasonable question is basically 'shut up Mr. Negative, no one's interested in your opinion', I wonder how it would go over?
arrowhen said @ 3:00am GMT on 25th Jun
I imagine he would either respond in earnest, tell you to fuck off, downmod you, or ignore you. Same as anyone else would.

I mean, what do you think he's going to do with all this Authority you think he has? Ban you for crimethink? Slip mookiee 100 karma under the table to take his side?
sanepride said @ 3:43am GMT on 25th Jun
As a matter of fact 'banned for crimethink' or at least 'negativethink' is his implicit message. Here's the thing- steele's entitled to express his views and engage in debate here same as everyone else. But when he issues sweeping judgements on other members, shutting down their views, he dons his 'moderator' crown, whether he's cognizant of it or not.
The result- pushing out people whose views he happens to find irksome, should result in a very nice, harmonious forum. I see lots of heavily upmodded posts on the imminent arrival of UBI in the future.
arrowhen said @ 4:42am GMT on 25th Jun
As a matter of fact 'banned for crimethink' or at least 'negativethink' is his implicit message.

If numbers and Fish and Ussmak are still here, I hardly think one of this community's most active and respected long-term members has anything to worry about.

Hell, if steele was the sort to ban people for saying things he didn't like, he would have booted the both of us during that big Free Will argument a couple years back, don't you think?
sanepride said @ 5:23pm GMT on 25th Jun
Hell I'm not worried, just fed up. As for being respected, that's a pretty relative term around here. Despite steele's verbal dismissal, I've tried to be respectful of other's views and to be an overall good, contributing citizen on this forum. And this bullshit is the return? Fuck that noise.
steele said[1] @ 7:29pm GMT on 24th Jun
Special effort? Let's not go crazy. This isn't even the first time I've called you out on your shit. Might be the first time you took it seriously though.
sanepride said @ 7:38pm GMT on 24th Jun
Whatever you say. You're The Man.
hellboy said @ 12:36am GMT on 27th Jun
This is why people were calling you a defeatist for 6 months.

Harsh dude. Why should I bother trying to counter this?

I see what you did there...
sanepride said @ 6:33pm GMT on 24th Jun
For some reason reading this comment again made me think of Face and his amazing EM space drive.
lilmookieesquire said @ 6:56pm GMT on 24th Jun [Score:2]
At least he tried. And you know what i like about this site? People took him seriously and went over it and gave him feedback, and some of that feedback was constructive. And I think -_- will be a better person for that and this website is a better site for doing that.

Did face make a discovery in his workshop that will rewrite the basics of physics as we know it and revolutionaoze space travel? Probably no. But people on this site weren't just telling him he's crazy or it's impossible or whatever. They tried to help a member of their community and that's the kind of stuff the political and social movements are built on.
sanepride said @ 7:33pm GMT on 24th Jun
Nothing against Face, whatever the merits of his efforts, I consider him a treasure on this site.
But as for your attempted analogy to building political and social movements, with all respect, I don't need a fucking lecture from you or steele or anybody on this site.
Reason forbid I should agree with numbers or fishpenners but there really is an assertive chilling/dismissal of viewpoints outside of very narrow ideological coalescence.
Don't dare even question the practicality of our noble idea or philosophy. Just assume this book is about what I think it's about. Really it reminds me of a high school clique, in this case led by the principal and head jock. Does steele's amazing work reviving and maintaining this site entitle him to an outsized voice? Sure, why not. Dude knows his shit, even if he doesn't seem to know much about people. But the thing is high school was a long time ago for me, and I don't need this bullshit.
Alright, end of rant, enjoy your day.
lilmookieesquire said[2] @ 10:31pm GMT on 24th Jun
As for the lecturing, I don't fancy I am the one doing the lecturing. My above comment literally had almost nothing to do with you, although I think you are being a bit "I want to speak to your manager". Now if you excuse me, I have to go lift weights and smoke weed behind the gym.

Sanepride Kashadoorian >:(
Ashley Katchadourian speech
HoZay said @ 12:45am GMT on 25th Jun
How do you open the minds of people whose worldviews are exclusively shaped by Fox News and Breitbart?
As much as I dislike facebook etc, engaging on social media is probably part of that answer. And learning to do it with joy, instead of loathing, is going to be a struggle (for me).

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