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An MLK Day Reflection: The Racial Wealth Gap Is Killing the Middle Class

#1

An MLK Day Reflection: The Racial Wealth Gap Is Killing the Middle Class

Dedrick Asante-Muhammad, Chuck Collins

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. would have been 90 on January 15, so it's time for a progress report.

Fifty years after co-founding the Poor People’s Campaign, a multiracial campaign for economic justice, the state of King's dream of racial equity and freedom from poverty is far from attained.

On the positive side, the U.S. Black unemployment rate reached historic lows in 2018. There's also been a modest recent uptick in median household wealth for Black, Latino, and white families alike. We could easily conclude that the racial economic divide is closing.

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#2

We, the working class, have no other choice but to unite as one against this government, this Duopoly which has been given over 240 years to govern us and perfect their policies and procedures which would provide equality to every single citizen, and because of their abject failure and abuse of this system through taking money from the wealthy and the corporations only to give them preference in everything that affects them, we must bring this all down, one way or another.

Prepare yourselves, organize with your friends, your family, your neighbors, your co-workers, educate your children how we can best stop this abuse, this corrupt system, and wait for the day when you’re called upon to stand up for the People, not the politicians.

That day is coming.

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#3

Because of being disabled I have been living on less than $14,000 a year for 25+ years. I am not as lonely as I once was in this special group. It’s very sad to think there are some 40 million of me here in amurika.

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#4

It never fails to amaze me how well Richard Wolff connects the dots on events and conditions that seem unbelievable many people appear to be utterly frozen - which is perhaps not an accident of chance.
Talk begins at min 7:45

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#5

and the fastest growing group are the ones that can’t even get disability anymore with historically low approval rates in admin courts. we’re going from poverty (your case) to outright extermination (my case).

Bottom line is, if you’re not making money for the ruling class, you’re marked for termination.

And this alone is easily cause for rebellion.

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#6

Wolff is a Global Treasure. :-)))

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#7

…with 5 bucks to my name until Feb. 3rd I’m right there with you…

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#8

how a society treats its old and vulnerable is the ultimate judge of that society’s quality, eh? the US fails spectacularly on that measure.

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#9

Back in the late 19th century, the attempts to unionize were not going well. The strikes were small and the rich merely hired others to do the work. The strikers were white males and they accepted no others into their ranks. And they were losing.
They refused to let any others into their ranks. But finally after rebuffing others, they decided they had no choice. That was the day they allowed blacks and communists join them in their strikes.
It was bloody, the rich fought back with force and violence. But that union won. They got the work day, the work week, overtime pay, many of the benefits that all of us got through their efforts and blood.
But through the decades the rich have once again divided us. Communists are hated, blacks are hated, and we are divided once again. The unions are destroyed for the most part.
And we forgot the lesson of how to stand together to stop the rich from ruling us all. We need to stand together. But we are so divided by the policies of the rich to make sure we can’t unite, it will be a long time before we decide to unite. Just like back in the 19th century when we were divided by race.
Trump’s people have for decades accepted policies that hurt them because of racial divide. And I can’t see where they will learn that what they are doing is hurting them. It could take decades more, just like in the 19th century before they realize that the hate is hurting them. And only by joining with others can they pull themselves out of the situation where the rich make the money and they get shafted.

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#10

Pony, like always you see what needs to be done. But the left can’t do it alone. And until those on the right decide they have been screwed by their masters, and I mean masters because they are controlled, the fight can’t be won.
Too many people are so disillusioned that they will never fight. That is why 40% of people don’t vote. If the 15% of progressives along with them and some of the independents, things could change. But they won’t fight. I have tried to convince people to vote, to fight, and I have never won.
It’s why I am so pessimistic, it could take decades before people decide they had enough.
The day may be coming, but not that soon. Most likely not in my lifetime and I might if lucky have 20 more yrs.
Sure people are angry. But they are divided. It took about 40 yrs the last time this was happening for people to unite enough to change things. And it took a few decades for the rich to take back some of what they lost. And then they went and in the last few decades destroyed the unions and have gotten themselves into the sole power. For now they have us where they want us, divided.

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#11

Yes, yes it does. Wasn’t always this way. Must adapt somehow.

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#12

As long as they have WalMart- they’ll be happy.

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#13

Sorry about this, but look at it this way: Who would want to aspire living to a very old age in the USA unless one is very wealthy and has tons of people to look after him or her?

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#14

Rebellion??? Come now, most humans are greedy.

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#15

Some of us are stuck like a Timex watch, tic toc, tic toc.

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#16

The problem is that with low wages, they need the walmarts. As do many others.

The US has during it’s time made sure that resources and goods were obtained at the lowest cost. So with a good mark up, they would be profitable. Walmart is just the latest in our history of providing cheap goods for the masses so they would be happy.

It’s why we moved our industry to china and elsewhere during the last few decades. That way with the low wages, people will still be able to buy. And the rich make out on both ends.

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#17

Actually before SS and medicare, many of the old and poor were badly off. When we left the agricultural society, it became more difficult for families to stay together as the industrial age started.
Which is why FDR started SS, far too many of our elderly were suffering from poverty. And then medicare was added later on.
But there were periods where the elderly were taken care of. But today with families split up and all over, it has gotten difficult.
I took care of the elderly in a skilled nursing home. Many had families that couldn’t take care of them, others had no family. It’s a sad situation. I became friend and family to them, well not all, but many. It was not the most physical job I ever had, but it was the hardest and most emotionally draining one.
I even had to take care of my mother-in-law at the facility, her dementia was so bad by that time, we could have never taken care of her at home and work. And we had no money to pay for home care. And she was the 2nd to have dementia in my wife’s family, her father, mother, and brother. And now her sister is showing signs. But her sister is far away, there won’t be anything we can do for her.
The days of the husband working and the wife stays home is long gone for most of us. I don’t see how that will ever change except for those well off.

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#18

Then those well off that help the rest in society since a lot of this is their fault.

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#19

I hear you- I hope you have family and friends around- but I still hear and feel you. Our elderly and disabled folks have suffered the most. I hope you have shelter and food. Some communities have 211 to help people who are in a jam , but then I am sure you know about this. Our society is geared towards the glamorous and wealthy.

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#20

It hurt the very foundation of society. Our whole family units ( except for the wealthy as a whole) are not doing well.

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