Fifty years later, we’re still marching.
Fifty years (and six months) ago, 200,00-300,ooo people turned out for the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.
This past Saturday 80,00-100,0o0 showed up in Raleigh North Carolina for the Moral March , something that has actually been happening in Raleigh every February since 2007 as part of the HKonJ -Historic Thousands on Jones Street (where the legislature meets).
Last year’s merciless legislative assault on voting rights, public education, health care, and poor families gave progressive organizing a renewed urgency.
Multimillionaire Art Pope, a sort of home-grown Koch brother, had poured money into state elections. Far-right Republicans took the governorship and a supermajority in the state legislature. And in 2013 they made the most of it, gutting spending on education, rejecting the expansion of Medicaid to half a million poor people, and passing one the worst anti-voting laws in the country. They raised taxes on poor people by abolishing the Earned Income Tax Credit for almost a million families and used the savings to fund new tax breaks for a handful of the state’s richest residents. The governor violated a campaign pledge by signing a law that further restricts access to abortion.
North Carolina became, in short, the proving grounds for an untrammeled Tea Party approach to governance and what Barber calls “extreme, constitutionally inconsistent, morally indefensible, economically insane policies.”
Peter Montgomery joined me on the show this morning to talk more about the movement, the march and, as he wrote at Right Wing Watch, how the right is now attacking Rev. William Barber, the head of the NC NAACP who organized the Moral Monday protests and Saturday’s Moral March.
I was honored to interview Rev. Barber last November for the Randi Rhodes Show, and was put in touch with him by Jeff Bryant, a North Carolina resident, associate fellow at the Campaign for America’s Future, and director of the Education Opportunity Network . Jeff also joined me on the show this morning to talk about the march and a bit on our education woes too.
Today, we also talked (very little) about the Sochi Opening Ceremonies (thanks to Sally Kohn for saying it was the “gayest” ever), and a bit more about Michael Sam, the NFL draft hopeful who, very courageously, came out!
Good for him!
Now for the not-so-good stuff… It’s Monday, that means the Crooks & Liars crew spent yesterday watching the right wingers on the corporate-owned mainstream media pimp their talking points. Nicole Belle joins in with “Fools on the Hill”™
Ready to hear the weekly conservative talking point? Obamacare is making people lazy, because the CBO reported that people now have the freedom to work fewer hours. Sen. Roy Blunt thinks so. So does George Will.
Maybe that’s why Fox News celebrated a 100 year old man, celebrating his 25th year of employment at McDonalds. He sure isn’t lazy. Living at below poverty wages, but not in the least lazy.
AB Stoddard betrayed her admiration for Rand Paul by telling Candy Crowley that blaming Hillary for Bill Clinton’s affairs may indeed be a winning strategy. Whu-what?
And David Gregory gives cover to all his fellow journalists for messing up how they reported on the CBO report by saying it’s a lot to explain. You know, journalism is hard work. It’s so much easier to just repeat Republican talking points.