martin luther king jr: on black radicalism


"The black revolution is much more than the struggle for the rights of Negroes. It is forcing America to face all its interrelated flaws - racism, poverty, militarism and materialism. It is exposing evils that are rooted deeply in the whole structure of society. It reveals systemic rather than superficial flaws and suggests that radical reconstruction of society itself is the real issue to be faced... White America must recognize that justice for black people cannot be achieved without radical change in the structure of our society. [...] For years I labored under the idea of reforming the existing institutions of the society, a little change here, a little change there... now I feel quite differently. I think you've got to have a reconstruction of the entire society, a revolution of values"

-Martin Luther King, Jr.

Originally Posted 9/17/2008

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