Saturday, July 20, 2024

People’s March

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Letter to the Editor

A National Call for Moral Revival
A call to join the Peaceful People Protest
March on Washington, Saturday, June 29th, 10 AM
Washington, D.C.  at Third & Pennsylvania Avenue, NW

By Jocelyn Ault, Social Justice Director
Stratford’s First Congregational Church Social Justice Team

In this advanced country, how can we accept 800 people dying each day from poverty and low wealth? Over 50% of our children live in poverty. According to the New England Journal of Medicine, in 2023, “Current poverty is associated with 42% excess risk for death. Cumulative poverty (i.e., 10 continuous years of poverty) is associated with 71% excess risk for death.” We must recognize poverty as a major health crisis that impacts us all.

“For too long we have believed the propaganda that tells us the suffering of America’s poor is either their fault or the inevitable cost of economic growth.”

~The Rev. Dr. William J. Barber II.

The Social Justice Team at Stratford’s First Congregational Church wants to ask our community to consider, “How can this be morally right?” We believe that together, we have the capacity to make huge changes if we decide this is truly a priority issue.

The Poor People’s Campaign is a national call for people of moral conscience, uniting people across the country to fight for economic justice, civil rights, ecological responsibility, and to demonstrate “love of neighbors.”  In the tradition of non-violent protest, hundreds of thousands of people will be taking to the streets of Washington to protest the inherent injustice of the wealthiest nation in the world having over 128 Million poor people. The June 29th Moral March on Washington will also launch outreach to 15 million poor and low-wage infrequent voters ahead of the 2024 U.S. elections and beyond. Our votes are a way to voice priorities supporting, “love of our neighbor as ourselves.” We need those we entrust with our votes to make policies ending poverty a priority.

Organized by the Reverend Dr. William Barber II, there is a coalition of over thirty organizations for this March on Washington. He is an American Protestant minister, social activist, professor in the Practice of Public Theology and Public Policy and founding director of the Center for Public Theology & Public Policy at Yale Divinity School.

Please consider participating in this Washington March and in this movement.

To learn more, here is a link to the March information and a link to the interview of the Rev. Dr. Barber II with Jon Stewart.

When we stand by and do nothing, we are complicit. It is critical we find ways to be engaged. Is joining the March what you will do? Is there something else you will do? Will you use your vote to say we are a country built on prosperity and such pervasive poverty (and the systems that sustain it), is morally wrong and undermining America?

Sincerely,

Jocelyn Ault, Social Justice Director, and Stratford’s First Congregational Church Social Justice Team

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