More than 50 years ago, the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) worked with Dr. Martin Luther King and others on the Poor Peoples Campaign, a multiracial effort to end poverty and gain economic justice.
As you may have noticed, the 1968 effort didn't take care of the problem. But it did point in the right direction. And there's obviously unfinished business.
I'm pleased that AFSC today is part of a renewed Poor Peoples Campaign, which describes itself as A National Call for Moral Revival. It's an effort to bring people together across many divides to oppose poverty, systemic racism, ecological devastation, an endless war economy and toxic religious nationalism. The movement is co-chaired by the Rev. William Barber and the Rev. Liz Theoharis, both of whom have made their way to West Virginia.
Last Saturday was intended to be the occasion for a mass march in Washington. Given COVID-19, plans morphed into a Digital Justice Gathering, which has attracted millions of viewers and generated hundreds of thousands of letters to governors and congress. You can watch the program and learn more about the effort here. It's a pretty inspiring program and a call to action. There is all that unfinished business after all.
This is clearly a critical time and efforts like this could make a difference.