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Press conference announcing The Poor People's Campaign [4 December 1967] [Atlanta, Ga.] Ladies and gentlemen of the press, Iâ€™m going to read an opening statement which I think [tape interrupted][. . .] and at the end we made a decision which I wish to announce today. The Southern Christian Leadership Conference will lead waves of the nationâ€™s poor and disinherited to Washington, D.C. next spring to demand redress of their grievances by the United States government and to secure at least jobs or income for all. We will go there, we will demand to be heard, and we will stay until America responds. If this means forcible repression of our movement we will confront it, for we have done this before. If this means scorn or ridicule we embrace it, for that is what Americaâ€™s poor now receive. If it means jail we accept it willingly, for the millions of poor already are imprisoned by exploitation and discrimination. But we hope with growing confidence that our campaign in Washington will receive at first a sympathetic understanding across our nation followed by dramatic expansion of nonviolent demonstrations in Washington and simultaneous protests elsewhere. In short, we will be petitioning our government for specific reforms and we intend to build militant nonviolent actions until that government moves against poverty. We have now begun preparations for the Washington campaign. Our staff soon will be taking new assignments to organize people to go to Washington from ten key cities and five rural areas. This will be no mere one-day march in Washington but a trek to the nationâ€™s capital by suffering and outraged citizens who will go to stay until some definite and positive action is taken to provide jobs and income for the poor. We are sending [tape interrupted][. . .] America is at a crossroads of history and it is critically important for us as a nation and a society to choose a new path and move upon it with resolution and courage. It is impossible to underestimate the crisis we face in America. The stability of a civilization, the potential of free government, and the simple honor of men are at stake. Those who serve in the human rights movement, including our Southern Christian Leadership Conference, are keenly aware of the increasing bitterness and despair and frustration that threaten the worst chaos, hatred, and violence any nation has ever encountered. In a sense, we are already at war with and among ourselves. Affluent Americans are locked in the suburbs of physical comfort and mental insecurity. Poor Americans are locked inside ghettos of material privation and spiritual debilitation. And all of us can almost feel the presence of a kind of social insanity which could lead to national ruin. The true responsibility for the existence of these deplorable conditions lies ultimately with the larger society and much of the immediate responsibility for removing the injustices can be laid directly at the door of the federal government. This is the institution which has the power to act, the resources to tap, and the duty to [respond][tape interrupted][. . .] that a clear majority in America asking for the very things which we will demand in Washington. We have learned from hard and bitter experience in our movement that our government does not move to correct a problem involving race until it is confronted directly and dramatically. It required a Selma before the fundamental right to vote was written into the federal statutes. It took a Birmingham before the government moved to open doors of public accommodations to all human beings. What we now need is a new kind of Selma or Birmingham to dramatize the economic plight of the Negro and compel the government to act. We intend to channelize the smoldering rage and frustration [tape interrupted][. . .] our new Washington movement. We also look for participation by representatives of the millions of non-Negro poor: Indians, Mexican-Americans, Puerto Ricans, Appalachian whites, and others. And we shall welcome assistance from all Americans of good will. And so we have decided to go to Washington and use any means of legitimate, nonviolent protest necessary to move our nation and our government on a new course of social, economic, and political reform The Poor People's Campaign come to and end june 19 1968 , Mr Jerry Robinson President and Vice President Mr Floyd Davis of The Poor People's Campaign Inc 12-29-2003 in Chicago il call 1-312-794-5335 We have a 501C3 This Campaign is for anyone that stands for equality,unity and respect among everyone no matter what your cultural,ethnic or religious background.We are against discrimination whether it be for gender,sexual orientation, disabilities, political ideas or morals. Here we'll discuss politics and basic things that people deal with everyday.We hope this group will expand and eventually become a network of people with a common goal.(TOGETHER WE HAVE POWER) My people we must continue to stand as one. For as you all know it is together that we are most powerful. It was together that our people fought, went to jail, and even died for our sake. So it is now more than ever that we must stand taller than ever, and keep the fight that they started alive." WE MUST PUT AND END TO DRUGS AND GANGS AND GUNS THIS IS WHAT KEEPING OUR PEOPLE AND KIDS (DOWN AND OUT)STOP THE VIOLENCE!,We Have These PROGRAMS & INITIATIVES, Voter Registration Education Conflict Resolution, Nonviolence Training Economic Empowerment, Health Care, Youth Development at THE POOR PEOPLE'S CAMPAIGN INC
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