January 20th,, Martin Luther King Day, is the only national holiday that commemorates the peace and justice work of a U. S. citizen.
I’m a Viet Nam veteran and for me, Martin Luther King‘s most powerful speech was on April 4th of 1967. “Beyond Vietnam” directed attention to the triplets of war – militarism, materialism, and racism. All of these lead to moral and financial poverty.
When I was in Vietnam I saw many children. Every time I look at a child I see our greatest national resource. It pains my heart to see our children’s future being depleted by our government’s fixation on the military solution to conflict - invasions, occupations, death and destruction. Every dollar spent on “defense” and war (the Iraq and Afghanistan wars will eventually cost us $3 trillion) is a dollar that could have been used to bring our over 16 million children out of poverty.
On this national holiday read “Beyond Vietnam”. Contemplate the words of this brave and magnificent man. Think about what you can do to bring peace and justice into the U.S.A. and protect our greatest national resource.