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Everyone is familiar with Martin Luther King's I Have a Dream speech. Whether you love him or you hate him or you're indifferent to his existence on this earth, you're still aware of the speech. If you're sitting in front of your computers at home, at work or anywhere in between, I would like to ask you a question -- what is your dream?

Do you dream of being able to send your kids college? Do you dream that simple dream of being able to pay off your bills and have some money left over at the end of the month? Do you dream of being able to go to your doctor without having to worry about how much the prescriptions, the diagnostic tests and other procedures may cost? Do you dream of getting paid a living wage? What is your dream?

When I look at the life of Martin Luther King, I look at someone who was focused on justice and equal opportunity for all. Every now and then I think we get lost, as progressives and lose our focus. Every time we open our mouths, conservative will stand up and say, "I object." So, sometimes, we get caught up in the back and forth with conservatives. Sometimes, we forget that our goal is to accomplish something. Our goal is to stand up for justice and equal opportunity. Our goal is not to combat every single, silly utterance of the Right. (See Pat Robertson, Sarah Palin and Rush Limbaugh for starters)

To combat the biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression, we were told we had to bail out Wall Street. Others have said that we should let Wall Street flounder and bailed out MainStreet. Wall Street is now rolling in record profits because of our money. Main Street is hurting. Where's the justice? Barney Frank, Chris Dodd and Congress need to enact legislation that is going to seriously help MainStreet. Main Street is the engine that will create jobs for the rest of us. The goal of this legislation should not be to hand out money to a couple of fat cats but instead to enact legislation that will help revitalize MainStreet. As MainStreet returns to its former glory, it will begin to hire.

I'm not sure where the idea of Green Jobs came from. I'm not sure why it has been pushed to the back burner or even taken off the stove of ideas. It is time for Ross Feingold, Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer to figure out a way to enact a series of bills which are targeted to help our environment and create millions of new jobs. We need to be able build large wind farms. We need to figure out how to build a smarter electrical grid that will easily transfer the power created by these wind farms in the Midwest to our large urban centers which need the energy. We need to give small, medium and large companies opportunities that these contracts. This legislation should include language that prevents jobs are being shipped overseas. Everything should be made here in America. This will give everybody an equal opportunity in an industry that should be around for a good while. (BTW, why hasn't we poured money into Telsa cars? An electric car that really works and is ready to drive today? I'm just asking?) Why is this so hard?

There are hundreds if not thousands of infrastructure projects that are sitting idle across the country today. Congress, along with local and state governments (that's right, everybody needs to work together) needs to get these projects kick started with the stimulus money that has not been spent as of yet. Almost all of our schools need to be redesigned, rebuilt, repaired and updated. Money needs to be poured into education. For the most part, we are teaching students approximately the way we taught students 100 years ago. Isn't there a better method? What is the role of computers in the classroom? Can't learning be fun and interactive? Where are all of the new ideas for teachers and teaching? This is where justice starts. This is where opportunity starts.

When I close my eyes, I dream of a country where my grandson and your grandchild can go to a public or private school anywhere in the country and still get a solid education. I dream of a country where we are not all slaves to big corporations. I dream of a country where we all have equal access to affordable, efficient and cost-effective healthcare. Finally, I dream of a country that has figured out that we have great because of our compassion and love for humanity and not because of our military might. These are my dreams as a progressive. What are yours?

Originally posted to ecthompson on Mon Jan 18, 2010 at 03:28 PM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  To do as the Big Dog says: (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ecthompson, davehouck, Chacounne

    "Lead by the power of our example and not the example of our power."

    Bill Clinton.

    True patriotism hates injustice in its own land more than anywhere else. -------------------------------------------------------Clarence Darrow

    by Leroy the Roadie on Mon Jan 18, 2010 at 03:35:20 PM PST

  •  My dream is that one day (5+ / 0-)

    everyone on the planet will see themselves as part of one family, the human family.

    I dream of, and work for, the day when torture will be consigned to the dustbin of history.

    I dream of, and work for the day, when all those who have been responsible for torture are held legally responsible.

    I dream of, and work for, a day when we treat each other gently.

         Dreaming and working,
              For Dan,
              Heather

    Planning a March for Legal Accountability for Torture in Washington, DC, September 4th, 2010, the Saturday of Labour Day Weekend.

    by Chacounne on Mon Jan 18, 2010 at 03:36:34 PM PST

    •  this is what I'm talking about! (0+ / 0-)

      this is exactly right. This is exactly what Martin Luther King was talking about. The freedom to come together. I love it. Thanks for the comment.

      Be involved! http://www.whereistheoutrage.net

      by ecthompson on Mon Jan 18, 2010 at 06:48:52 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  A dream, a prayer, a path (3+ / 0-)

    May all beings be free from suffering;
    May all beings be at peace.

  •  My dream is to see a real progressive agenda (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Chacounne

    enacted.

  •  My dream is to become part of a community. (3+ / 0-)

    I've always held myself back from connecting face-to-face with other people -- I've always had a reason (I was in the closet, I needed to work extra hours to pay my bills, I need to get my teeth fixed first, I'm afraid of the bars, I'm too old, I'm too ugly, etc.)

    I'm out of debt.  Teeth are getting fixed.  I'm running out of excuses.  

    Maybe it won't be the gay community (for indeed, I'm old and unattractive).  Maybe it'll be the Unitarians.  Or maybe it will be that volunteer position teaching literacy skills.  Or some combination.

    But I want to connect.
    To have friends.
    To do good things.
    To be . . . less alone.

    "They're like rats jumping over a ship." -- Colorado GOP official on NPR 1-17-2010

    by marc davis on Mon Jan 18, 2010 at 03:39:01 PM PST

    •  Sounds like you've got some good ideas (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RosyFinch, Chacounne, marc davis

      I've met some great folks who are Unitarians.

      And teaching literacy sounds like a wonderful idea; a friend of mine did that through the local community college.

      And personally, as a generalization, I wouldn't recommend the bars as a place to find community.

      Other ideas might be your local MoveOn chapter, or volunteer with local environmental organizations.  We have a local group here that goes out on the weekends cleaning up rivers and creeks; which is actually a lot of fun when you're with a group of like minded people.

  •  Dream to Have My Health Not Bankrupt Me (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Chacounne

    It'd be likely if we could make it to Canada. Unfortunately that requires some bad luck on someone else's part in our case.

    I don't see reform as preventing bankruptcy if we stay. Our dental plan alone leaves us paying 1/4 of our total income, out of pocket, each year for the next 4-5 years.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Mon Jan 18, 2010 at 03:43:23 PM PST

  •  gay rights (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    davehouck, Chacounne, marc davis

    the civil rights struggle of our generation.

    •  well stated (0+ / 0-)

      there's no doubt about it that gay rights have been left behind. The fact that we are still talking about gay marriage is an abomination. Progressives need to come together behind this central thought. This is about civil rights and it's about justice. Even Coretta Scott King got behind gay marriage. Extremely important issue.

      Thanks for bringing up this topic.

      Be involved! http://www.whereistheoutrage.net

      by ecthompson on Mon Jan 18, 2010 at 06:46:17 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  my dream: (4+ / 0-)

    citizens of the united states realizing that there is a greater international community out there that we MUST be a part of. That we realize that a person is a person, no matter what differences they may hold.  

    "Corporate America decides which speech is free, and which isn't" Mike Malloy

    by rexymeteorite on Mon Jan 18, 2010 at 03:44:03 PM PST

  •  A Political Awakening (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Chacounne

    I think we might actually be close to one...

    An awakening that recognizes that policy can be achieved without party and corruption can be rooted out...

    "I'm not a Maverick, but I used to drive one."

    by StephenLahanas on Mon Jan 18, 2010 at 03:50:49 PM PST

  •  I have dream (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Chacounne

    I have a dream that the phrase "Homeless Veteran" no longer exists in the language - in any language - in this country.

    I have a dream that no child who commits a crime can be charged as an adult and suffer the consequences forever.  Children lack sufficient reasoning power to be held to an adult standard for their actions. If you would doom a person to second or third class  - you can hardly call it "citizenship" - all you need do is ensure that they have a felony criminal history.

    I have a dream that no person can be foreclosed upon or evicted without benefit of a financial planner who can put them on a responsible payment plan.

    I have a dream that those parts of America that are under protection remain under that protection so that future generations can gaze upon them and walk those acres with rapt attention and awe.  That they be kept in pristine condition; where rare plants and animals can remain unmolested and free.

    I have a dream that the Arts and Sciences flourish with the full support of a government grateful to those persons whose talents nourish our spirits.

    I have a dream where any person arrested for neglect, abuse or torture of any animal be given a a psychiatric evaluation and if convicted, must, as part of the sentence receive therapeutic help.  

    These are all achievable dreams, if we agitate, organize, debate with passion and commitment.  

    Water dropping on a stone.  After a million years, you get the Grand Canyon.  I thought at one time that my own personal dreams were nothing more than a chimera.  I was wrong. There are no completely unattainable dreams.

    I have a dream that the Chicago Cubs will win the World Series in my lifetime.

    Hmmmmm.  Well . . . .

    Our promises are made in proportion to our hopes, but kept in proportion to our fears.-LaRouchefoucauld

    by luvsathoroughbred on Mon Jan 18, 2010 at 04:03:59 PM PST

  •  My dream... (0+ / 0-)

    ...is for life to get better.  For my dad to stop being crazy and mean to my mom.  For my mom to feel happy instead of just stressed and depressed.  For my anxiety and depression to improve enough that I can rebuild my life.  For all of our health to improve.

    None of it is going to really happen though; I guess that's why it's a dream or whatever, but it's what I wish for.

  •  dream of resprect for learning (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ShempLugosi

    I dream of libraries and music halls, respect for people who learn and teach.

    This means a diminishing of the importance placed on profit-making.

    I guess this is my tactic, my choice of how I hope to help conquer the "giant triplets of racism, materialism, and militarism", in the incomparable words of Dr. King.

    the speech is Beyond Vietnam

    "You don't have to burn books to destroy a culture. Just get people to stop reading them." [Ray Bradbury]

    by RosyFinch on Mon Jan 18, 2010 at 05:54:10 PM PST

  •  I have 2 dreams (0+ / 0-)

    My personal dream is that my career as a musical theatre musician revive to the point where I can support myself with enough extra money to have a pizza now and then and be able to see the shows which my friends are involved in without having to beg for comp tickets.  My career was just starting to take off before the banksters decided they wanted ALL the money in the world.  

    My dream for the world is that people wake up and see that greed will get them nowhere and decide to share with their fellow human beings who are less fortunate.  Greed and cruelty to animals are the things I'd like to eradicate!  

    "In our century, we've learned not to fear words" - Lt. Uhura

    by ShempLugosi on Mon Jan 18, 2010 at 06:07:19 PM PST

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