40 years ago today, Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. was shot while standing on the balcony of the Lorraine Hotel in Memphis. (The picture here was taken the day before his assassination.) Dr. King was in Memphis to speak about poverty, and, in yesterday's Atlanta Journal-Constitution, King's son, Martin Luther King III, wrote an op-ed piece urging presidential candidates to create a cabinet-level position to deal specifically with poverty, saying, "The U.S. Census Bureau reports the current poverty rate is just over 12 percent, as it was in 1968, while the number of people living in poverty has grown from 25 million to more than 36 million, including 12 million children. Even worse, a family of four with two children and an annual income of $21,027 is not even considered poor by our government's reporting standards. Many people have become immune to these statistics, but we cannot wait for another Katrina to truly grasp that America is awash in poverty." The piece is worth reading, today of all days. [AJC]


Share This Story