The following was posted on the 27th of August, the day before the anniversary of the Great March on Washington. I post it again in honour of Martin Luther King Jr., whose birthday is officially celebrated today in the United States.
May we all learn from this man and may racism become a thing of the past very soon…

It was 43 years ago tomorrow that Martin Luther King delivered his famous ‘I Have A Dream Speech’ at the Great March on Washington for Peace and Freedom. To see a video of the complete speech, click HERE.
I was there along with a quarter of a million fellow Americans. It was the most gratifying day of my life as I was on the organising committee for that March the entire summer. To witness such a success was most rewarding. To hear the words of the great Dr. King, spoken live, were most encouraging. The last paragraph of his speech is the part that has stayed with me every day of my life since then…
“And when this happens, When we allow freedom to ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, “Free at last! free at last! thank God Almighty, we are free at last!”
But…what I see in every day life in Israel reminds me that those words are still just a dream. We have a long way to go before it becomes a reality.
I see discrimination daily… it is as ugly now as it was 43 years ago. I see it more from Americans in Israel than from anyone else… here is an incident that occurred just the other day…
I was in a gift shop and an American tourist entered. The conversation went as follows…
Tourist— Do you have any Arab toy soldiers?
Clerk— No, why would you want them anyway?
Tourist— So I can teach my grandson how to kill them.
Me— Have you ever met an Arab?
Tourist— Of course not, I keep away from them because they all want to kill me.
Me— I have met thousands of Arabs, I have never met one that wants to kill me, but I have met hundreds of American Jews, like yourself, that want to kill Arabs.
What possesses a person to be so hateful? What possible reason could there be, was he trying to impress the clerk with his ‘machoness’, his reverent zionism, or was it just plain stupidity? My guess is that it was the latter. But I do see a rise in this hatred being imported from the United States. The most extremes of the Judeo nazis of the past were also imports, the kahanas, the goldsteins , may their names be erased from memory. It must not be tolerated or it will be thought of as acceptable thought. It isn’t.
Israel has tried openly to show their opposition to this type of thought. Racism is illegal in Israel(in the books), racist orgnisations are outlawed (in the books)… we all know that is a load of bull! Racism is alive and well in Israel… and is strengthened by the hatred that is imported from the States.
I want to see the dream fulfilled… I want to see a world without hatred. I want to see an Israel/Palestine without walls, I want to see peace.
Perhaps if we all go back to the top of this post, click on the speech and listen to it carefully, more of us will realise that there is another way….


  1. Housewife4Palestine 4 بيت فلسطين said,

    January 15, 2007 at 23:19

    That is horrible that anyone would wish to teach their grandson how to commit murder towards anyone.

    To think this man doesn’t even know us.

    I agree their is a lot of racism especially from American’s I have met and all this hate is just sad.

    As you know I am sure, that I wish it would just go away.

  2. DesertPeace said,

    January 15, 2007 at 23:27

    Yes, it is horrible… but I am confident that it will ‘go away’ as long as there are people like you and I showing an alternative.

  3. Servant Savant said,

    January 15, 2007 at 23:56

    Ah crap. I knew I shouldn’t read DesertPeace today. Now ya got me all weepy and I’ll be like this for hours.

    I believe it too, Steve. We shall overcome. We. We shall. Together. Thanks Brother. Now pass the fricken tissue.

  4. DesertPeace said,

    January 16, 2007 at 05:42

    Well, I’m glad you did read this today Servant,.. yes, We Shall Overcome.. TOGETHER!

  5. CrazyComposer (aka Peter Amsel) said,

    January 16, 2007 at 13:37

    Kind of reminds me of an episode from my sordid childhood when the daughter of someone I know said, “I don’t want to go to the boardwalk,” (when we were going out for a walk in Brighton Beach, only a few short blocks from the boardwalk).

    When asked why, this child – only months older than me – replied that there were “too many animals” there … but she was assured that the animals were all on leashes.

    “Not dogs and cats,” this little JAP replied, “Puerto Ricans and Knee-grows …” …

    That kind of ignorance and hatred is taught, it doesn’t come naturally, and to hear it come out of the mouth of a young girl who has everything going for her (economic advantages, social advantages and everything she could possibly need) demonstrates that racism is a virus passed on from one parent to their children.

    As her father had replied when asked why he joined the auxiliary police force, “somebody’s got to keep the knee-grrr’s in their place”. Now, I can say that this is not something that this individual got from his parents, or from his brother, whom I have also met … which also demonstrates that racism is a CONSCIOUS choice. We make the decision as to how we are going to think about someone and their origins and, as a result, can change the way we think.

    Dr Martin Luther King Jr. would look at the world today and be ashamed. Apartheid in South Africa ended, to be sure, to be replaced with apartheid in Israel/Palestine.

    People “of colour” in the United States are able to ride anywhere on public transportation, but they are jailed at a higher rate than any other ethnic group … save for the new targets … the Arabs. Now the right of habeas corpus has been stripped away by the various laws pushed through by the “Great Decider”, the man who has, single-handedly, returned the state of civil rights (for all races) back to the point just after the signing of the Magna Carta.

    Dr King would say of his dream that his children are being judged: not for the content of their characters, but for the colour of their skin and whether or not they are wearing clothes that make them look like “bangers”, gang members, and others that fit into the racial profiling categories. Instead of being judged for the content of their minds they are still being judged by the outward appearances, the least important of things that make up a human being.

    … but … you know …

    I have a dream as well: that one day we will be able to look back at the speeches of Dr King and tell our children about how terrible it was “before we learned our lessons” and began to live as one.

  6. DesertPeace said,

    January 16, 2007 at 13:43

    Brilliant comment dear Son…. but I must say that your good memory is sometimes very frightening 😉

%d bloggers like this: