Highlights from THE REAL NEWS NETWORK's event honoring MLK on the 50th anniversary of his assassination, featuring his 1967 speech, "Why I am Opposed to the War in Vietnam," and a discussion with actor Danny Glover, Our Revolution President Nina Turner, and Executive Producer Eddie Conway
JAISAL NOOR: To mark the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, the Real News Network presented King's speech, "Why I'm Opposed to the War in Vietnam.".
REV. DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR: I'm using as a subject from which to preach why I am opposed to the war in Vietnam. Now, let me make it clear in the beginning that I see this war as an unjust, evil, and futile war. Rationalizations and the incessant search for scapegoats are the psychological cataracts that blind us to our sins. There comes a time when silence is betrayal. An almost facile connection between the war in Vietnam and the struggle I and others have been waging in America. A few years ago there was a shining moment in that struggle. It seemed as if there was a real promise of hope for the poor, both black and white, through the poverty program. There were experiments, hopes, and new beginnings. Then came the buildup in Vietnam. And I watched the program broken as if it were some idle political plaything of a society gone mad on war. And I knew that America would never invest the necessary funds or energies in rehabilitation of its poor so long as adventures like Vietnam continued to draw men and skills and money like some demonic destructive suction tube.
On the 50th anniversary of the assassination of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Former Ohio State Senator Nina Turner reflects on the critical income inequality work he supported and our urgent need to finish it.
Nina Turner APR 4, 2018 10:00AM EDT
On April 2, 2018, in Memphis, Tennessee, Poetic Sun and Suavo Jones (L-R) walk past a mural inspired by the 'I Am a Man' sanitation workers strike that took place before Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was murdered. The city will commemorate the 50th anniversary of his assassination on April 4, 1968 at the Lorraine Motel with marches, speeches and tolling bells.
Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images
I recently travelled to Memphis to headline an event at the National Civil Rights Museum in the Lorraine Motel, the place the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated on April 4, 1968.
While in the hotel, I pictured the trajectory of the assassin’s bullet. With deadly and unstoppable force, the single bullet hit Dr. King’s cheek, shattered his jaw, hit his spine and landed in his shoulder. It was hard to shake the experience of being in the place where he was murdered. It was even harder to reconcile that Dr. King was killed while attempting to stir up the conscience of a nation and bring relief for striking sanitation workers.
EDDIE CONWAY: As I got into Philadelphia I saw thousands and thousands of people with signs on them saying "I'm Nina Turner," and "I'm Nina Turner," "I'm Nina Turner." And I'm like, who the devil is this? You know, I'm saying, this was like news to me, right. So I went back and I looked and I see that, well, OK. This was the sister that took a position that Bernie Sanders had the right philosophy and the right direction in terms of doing something to help America move forward. So I said, OK. Several months later I was in Chicago at the People's Summit and I heard Nina Turner. I heard the fire. I heard the energy. I heard the insight. And I had to go over, I had to meet her and talk to her, and so on.
But the fact that in our history, and now I'm speaking about blacks, African-Americans, et cetera, but actually America, too, black women have led the struggle. Have organized the struggle throughout our history. And we we hear names like Harriet Tubman, and we don't necessarily give them the kind of recognition that they need. We hear names like Fannie Lou Hamer. We hear names like Ella Baker. We hear names like Rosa Parks. Some names we don't hear, like Gloria Richardson, that was right here in Maryland. All right. But in the vein of those sisters that took a stand, that did some organizing, that moved our struggle forward, I want you to join me in welcoming former state Ohio Senator Nina Turner.
Prior to her keynote speech, Julie Chase spoke with Kat Hitchcock of Our Revolution Middle Tennessee and the Tennessee Activist Coalition.
Nina Turner, president of the newly formed Our Revolution spoke to a crowd at TSU about getting out the vote on February 24. Tennessee ranks 40th in the nation in voter registration and last in voter turnout.
Encouraging listeners to “move, protest, and plan,” Turner said: “You need to think.”
Nina Turner is a lifelong Democrat. But she believes the party needs to take a good, hard look in the mirror before it can secure its future.
Turner — a passionate supporter of Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and the president of Our Revolution, the political organization initially founded by the senator to push his agenda — said the Democratic Party needs to own up to its mistakes to win back voters to the party.
March 19, 2018
The Anna Julia Cooper Center at Wake Forest University will host the second bi-annual Know Her Truths national conference addressing the lives of women and girls of color. Know Her Truths 2018 will take place March 22 and 23 in Farrell Hall on the Wake Forest campus.
The conference will bring together scholars, students, community organizers, journalists, policy makers, and public officials for a two-day exploration of core realities shaping the lives of women and girls of color. The conference will feature a conversation with activist and author Janet Mock on Thursday, March 22, at 5 p.m.
On Thursday, political organization Our Revolution announced the addition of a progressive powerhouse, Nina Turner, as its president.
The organization announced their new addition through a press release issued online.
“The Our Revolution Board of Directors is excited to announce the appointment of a new president. Our Revolution is dedicated to the mission and founding principles of the political revolution started by Senator Bernie Sanders 2016 presidential campaign. Nina Turner, the former Ohio State Senator and Our Revolution Board Member, is set to take the helm and lead the organization to the next phase of success and growth.”
Turner is set to replace previous President Jeff Weaver, who previously served as Senator Bernie Sanders’ campaign manager. Some were critical of Weaver’s involvement in the organization, considering some of the mishandling and missteps he engaged in during the 2016 campaign.