We Must End Homelessness
Today is the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.
With persistent homelessness and poverty as well as depressed wages and stagnant unemployment, where is the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. when we need him more than ever?
His dreams along with the social contract and the safety net have been shredded as income and wealth inequality has increased.
If ever there was a time for “the fierce urgency of now” to address homelessness, poverty and hunger – it is now.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., in his 1967 speech, “Where Do We Go from Here: Chaos or Community?” said:
The time has come for us to civilize ourselves by the total, direct and immediate abolition of poverty.
In a nation as rich as America, is that not more true now than ever?
However, King cautioned us:
It’s much easier to guarantee the right to vote than it is to guarantee the right to live in sanitary, decent housing conditions.
Thus, this goal cannot be achieved with better advocacy or more effective legal action or the generosity of the wealthy.
We need a charismatic leader like Dr. King to define the dream and to lead a mass movement to end homelessness, poverty and hunger.
Marian Wright Edelman has challenged us to be the leaders.
A lot of people are waiting for Martin Luther King or Mahatma Gandhi to come back — but they are gone. We are it. It is up to us. It is up to you.
Even while we wait for a new leader, today on Dr. King’s birthday may we feel the fierce urgency of now and commit ourselves to working together to end homelessness in New Jersey!
If we fail to do so we may be condemned to the “long, dark, and shameful corridors of time reserved for those who possess power without compassion, might without morality, and strength without sight.”
We are ready to work together to achieve this goal. Are you?