On Page 602, A testament of hope: the essential writings and speeches of Martin Luther: King states the course that he was planning to take in the fight for economic equality:
The Emergence of social initiatives by a revitalized labor movement would be taking place a Negros are placing economic issues on the highest agenda. The coalition of an energized section of labor, Negroes, unemployed, and welfare recipients may be the source of power that reshapes economic relationships and ushers in a breakthrough to a new level of social reform. . . .
He continues on Page 631:
There is nothing except shortsightedness to prevent us from guaranteeing an annual minimum — and livable — income for every American family. There is nothing but a lack of social vision to prevent us from paying an adequate wage to every American citizen whether he be a hospital worker, laundry worker, maid, or day laborer.There is nothing, except a tragic death wish, to prevent us from reordering our priorities, so that the pursuit of peaces will take precedence over the pursuit of war. There is nothing to keep us from remolding a recalcitrant status quo with bruised hands until we have fashioned it into a true brotherhood. . . .
Such a coalition, as King envisioned it thirty-three years ago, is needed today. In order to survive.
Jefferson’s words, in the Declaration of Independence, that human rights are unalienable, mean that these rights can never be superseded. At all points of conflict the rights of humanity to survive must supersede the right of the few to make a profit. The right to a safe environment, life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, are unalienable human rights!
Since environmental illness and destruction, poverty, war, and famine are a global concern, it requires all of humanity to act collectively, in our overall interests for our survival as a species, to correct the problem and to remove the obstacle of capitalism. It requires a society where humanity has social, economic, and political control over the entire environment, economically, politically, and socially.
Such a society, a socialist society, is needed to ensure that all decisions affecting our lives are under the democratic control of humankind so that the production of goods will be done for the needs and survival of humanity instead of the production and the destruction of humanity by capitalism’s quest for profits.
With common ownership of the means of production, and common control and protection of all property and wealth, science and society will be in harmony with the ecosystem and humanity’s future.
With these goals we can begin to build a more effective environmental movement, labor movement, and all social and anti-war movements. As we continue to organize against capitalism and its destructive course, we can and will transform the world.
Martin Luther King stated these same goals in his speech to his staff at Frogmore, S.C. November 14, 1966. In that speech, he stated:
You can’t talk about solving the economic problem of the Negro without talking about billions of dollars. You can’t talk about ending the slums without first saying profit must be taken out of slums …. we are treading in difficult water, because it really means that we are saying that something is wrong …. with capitalism. …. There must be a better distribution of wealth and maybe America must move toward a democratic socialism.