Today we remember Harry Belafonte and all of the incredible causes that he championed. Here’s a clip of Mr. Belafonte throwing his hat in the ring for JFK. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C21r3qfRk4Y Under the Kennedy administration, Belafonte served as cultural advisor to the Peace Corps. He was one of the civil rights activists who met with Attorney General Robert Kennedy to discuss race relations. That meeting was a turning point, igniting debate that led to better understanding. Less than three weeks later, President Kennedy gave his landmark Civil Rights address. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-v85RcNbemo Behind the scenes, Belafonte supported civil rights leaders and workers, often bailing them out of jail in the middle of the night. He was close friends with both Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X. Farewell, Harry. Leaders of your kind are sorely missed today.
Fifty-five years ago today, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was cut down by assassination.
Fifty- six years ago today, he spoke out forcibly against the brutal U.S. occupation of Vietnam, and the forces of “racism, extreme materialism, and militarism” from which it was born.
After speaking against the war, he lived for precisely one more year.
Read his powerful words below:
“I am convinced that if we are to get on the right side of the world revolution, we as a nation must undergo a radical revolution of values. We must rapidly begin...we must rapidly begin the shift from a thing-oriented society to a person-oriented society. When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights, are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, extreme materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered.”
-Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
"Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break the Silence" Speech
Riverside Church, New York, N.Y., April 4, 1967
Listen to the entire speech here: