Elizabeth Warren's Touching Tribute to Black Lives Matter

"Economic justice is not - and has never been - sufficient to ensure racial justice. Owning a home won't stop someone from burning a cross on the front lawn. Admission to a school won't prevent a beating on the sidewalk outside. But when Dr. King led hundreds of thousands of people to march on Washington, he talked about an end to violence, access to voting AND economic opportunity. As Dr. King once wrote, "the inseparable twin of racial injustice was economic injustice.

These remarks underscored Warren’s comprehensive speech tying together economic and racial justice. It was a tribute to the power built by Black Lives Matter organizers across the country, and a call for justice that addresses the complex challenges faced by communities of color.

Her voice comes at a crucial time as the campaigns of the 2016 presidential campaigns pick up speed. When presidential candidates like Donald Trump and Ben Carson make racist comments towards Mexicans and Muslims respectively, it becomes our job to counter these narratives that dehumanize people of color.

Present-day America can’t forget a history that didn’t give everyone a chance at success. From the genocide of Native Americans and the theft of indigenous land, to the dehumanization of slaves over hundreds of years, much of the wealth that is controlled by the US has roots in colonization. That’s why today, 240 years after the signing of Declaration of Independence, for every dollar of wealth a white family has, a black family has less than a dime.

Martin Luther King Jr once said, “What good is having the right to sit at a lunch counter if you can’t afford to buy a hamburger?” At United for a Fair Economy, our job is to make sure everyone is allowed to sit at that lunch counter, and can afford to break bread together. We’ll continue to support the movements that push politicians to take this kind of bold and refreshing stand.

You can watch the rest of her speech here.

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  • commented 2017-11-16 07:59:31 -0500
    Dear Senator Warren,
    I just read your 9-27-15 remarks at the EMK Institute on Black Lives, Citizens, and Families Matter. Bravo! Thanks for speaking the truth about our always maligned and discriminated against minorities, especially African-Americans.
    Thank you for your sane, truthful, and so appropriate analysis, history, and recommendations! I can hardly believe all the dumb, rude, and horrible remarks so many people make to you and about you. Truly atrocious and truly unjustified and wrong-headed, they are!. I suppose I should be more understanding. But, in 2017, when so many so-called “white” people have access to so much information, history, and facts, it feels like “willful ignorance,” “intentional racism,” and “spiteful malice” has begun to run rampant. .
    We have a President who built up his base and became adept at reading and moving crowds while lying about our first African-American President for nearly eight years. He preached and evangelized with “the Birther Lie” that Obama was not American-born, so he is not American nor our legitimate POTUS. When Trump got multi-millions of patriotic, but duped, Americans to believe in his “Fake News”/Hoax/Fraudulent Birther Message and Movement, making “Birther liars” of them, too, influencing their families, friends, and fellow church members to not only mistrust, but also to demean, ridicule, discount, obstruct, and oppose all-things-Obama, he announced his candidacy for President of the USA. Even though his team got him to admit the truth on September 16, 2016 with one, short sentence buried in his Washington Hotel Opening Ceremonies speech (“President Barack Obama is American and legitimate, period.”), seven weeks later 61 % of “registered Republicans,” according to the polls, still believed his Birther Lie on Election Day, November 8, 2016! Most probably still haven’t heard the word that “Lying Donald” officially “quit being a Birther” and took it back 9-16-16. It has been the “quiet-est” public announcement I’ve heard, followed by Trump bad-mouthing and working to undo in one year just about every constructive policy, practice, law, and improvement Obama was able to cause to happen for the American people, in spite of almost total non-cooperation and obstruction by the Republican Party under Mitch McConnell from week one. The first words of new candidate Trump at the bottom of the staircase was a racist, lying rant against Mexico “sending their worst,” their immigrants being rapists and criminals, etc. He has stood up for Neo-Nazi’s, KKK-ers, and “white supremacists” now called the “alt-right” and “white nationalists.” He made one advocate and publisher his top Advisor in the White House for a while, and has freed tens of thousands to “go public” and assertively proclaim, in new words, the ideology that caused a young Dylan Roof to love Confederate “white supremacist” flags and murder 9 “black Christians” at a Bible study one evening in South Carolina. That “craziness” has happened since, and will continue to happen so long as Southerners and Americans continue to proclaim the old ideology and worship and hang on to public symbols of “The Lost Cause” and the Jim Crow “Good Ol’ Southern Way of Life” and Oppression, Discrimination, Segregation; White Supremacy and Racism in authority, status, law, custom, ands power structures; and Denial of equality, opportunity, worth, and Constitutional Citizens rights for all. You rightly point out that state and federal Republican leaders have been working to suppress in many ways African American votes that would go against Republicans.
    I am an 80 year old, retired UMC pastor-preacher from East Texas who first learned of my culturally passed-on “white supremacist” race prejudice when I saw a b-e-a-u-t-i-f-u-l African-American lady in the University of Texas Commons when I looked at her over my glass of iced tea. My universe shattered and tilted a bit—when I realized that I’d never even thought that to be a possibility. That was the beginning of my life-long learning about and unlearning prejudice and racism. When I learned that “we” had virtually left “African Americans” out of our history books, our text books and school books, our newspapers and magazines, I decided to not be one of those so-called “white people” ignorant of black history which is American history and without which we don’t even begin to understand our true American History! I marched and stood in the street night and day in Selma after Bloody Sunday, marched in Chicago, and showed up at the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom in 1963 for that glorious peaceful demonstration and example of our Constitutional First Amendment rights to freedom of expression, freedom of assembly, freedom to protest and ask for redress of our grievances from our government! I rejoiced when the bi-partisan Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965 were passed, freeing the federal government (1) to stop Southern States’ power and resources from oppressing and suppressing, hurting and killing African Americans and right-thinking “whites” (2) to bring about the 2nd Great American Revolution, the one that gave all Americans their freedom to enjoy their human, Constitutional, and citizens rights for 50 years!
    It continues to hurt me that most whites have little knowledge of “feeling for” blacks and their lived experience in the USA, that when we experience a “recession,” many minorities are experiencing a “depression.” Your shocking statistics, Senator Warren, about blacks’ relative incomes, much greater losses re housing and housing mortgage discrimination and criminality are not generally known. I drink coffee with mostly United Methodist Republicans who don’t really hear anything or, rather, believe much, that would keep them from believing “most minorities or blacks want a hand-out,” “they want to stay on the public dole rather than work,” “most welfare is a waste,” etc. They don’t really think police brutality, racism, and killing of unarmed black men and youth is a real problem needing addressing. Most are for Trump and half will applaud his “not wanting to coddle criminals”| (i..e., treat suspects illegally, abusively, and violently—though they’d never use those words for that reality). And I keep learning more and more ways we as a nation have “held blacks back.” Last year, I learned that the GI Bill that allowed American men the ability to “enjoy assistance” in getting homes and educations after WWII, and jumping one to three socio-economic levels(!) quickly— while raising families, benefitted predominantly “white men” and very few “blacks,” thanks to racism. You rightly point out that for the last several decades 90 % of the profits have gone to the economic top 10% of Americans; while middle class wages have remained relatively stagnant, African Americans have fared much worse. Thank you, Elizabeth Warren, for your astute and aware remarks in behalf of a long overdue, fairer “shake” and deal for African American citizens in the USA in this century. I like this “poster” I saw on a Chicago bus in 1963:

    “E c i d u j e r p” is “prejudice” spelled backwards.
    Either way, it makes no sense." Rev. J. Roland Cole (colejr78@gmail.com)
  • commented 2016-03-05 00:39:14 -0500
    WE can all do our part to change the mindset regarding people of other race. I myself base new hires at my finance office on qualifications and not color!