“The hour is late; the clock of destiny is ticking out.” Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
I will not watch the Trump inauguration later this week, not even out of morbid curiosity, but I do wonder how many times during his address Trump will refer to himself, his greatness, his intelligence, his manliness, etc. How many times will Trump bring up his ridiculous promise to make America great again? Will he talk about his Wall along our southern border? Will he threaten China? Who knows? As Chris Hedges said in a recent interview, Trump is protean, malleable, lacking in core convictions; all Trump understands is the power that money confers.
Every year on this day I think about Martin Luther King’s short life and the treasure trove of writings and speeches he left us; the words are as relevant today as they ever were. The arguments King made against militarism, racism and poverty still resonate, because America abounds in all those evils. The progress earned in the 1950’s and 1960’s with sweat and blood and broken bones has been systematically eroded by the owners of the corporate state and their political enablers. Income inequality is off the charts, civil liberties dangle by a slim thread, and for almost two decades this misguided nation has been engaged in continuous warfare. We’ve made the abnormal, normal.
King recognized class warfare when he saw it. Americans are conditioned by propaganda to deny the existence of class, but there’s no denying that the last 40 years have been a full on assault by the wealthy and well-to-do against the poor and working class; as a result, a staggering amount of wealth has flowed from the bottom and middle to the top. Ordinary Americans, most invisible and ignored and without voice in the halls of power, are understandably angry at the decline in their prospects. Donald Trump rode that anger, used it to manipulate voters into thinking he was their savior.
Yes, Dr. King, the hour is late and the clock is winding down. In less than a week a fatally flawed man will become president and usher in a frightening era of kleptocracy. Trump will start his reign of terror with a dismal approval rating. Not that this matters because Trump simply ignores truths he doesn’t like. He’ll claim, “No president has ever been as popular as me. People are saying I’m very, very popular,” and the corporate media will report it without challenge. There is no counterweight to balance Trump’s madness or that of the stooges he is bringing with him.
I’m going to read some of Dr. King’s words today, find solace in the thoughts of a man who was taken from his country way before his time.