Tax and financial advice from the Silicon Valley expert.

Meditation on “I have a dream”

Today is the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I have a dream” speech.

I read in the newspaper that this speech ranked in the top three speeches in U.S. history, together with Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysberg Address and Franklin Roosevelt’s Day of Infamy speech.

The heart of the speech is “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.”

Here is a YouTube link to the full speech.

For historical context, I recommend that you go with your family to see “The Butler”, now playing in movie theaters.

Most of the population of the United States wasn’t living when Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered the speech. I was 11 years old. As a reference in history books, the event seems remote and almost fictional. Even living at the time, the assasinations of John Kennedy, Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King seemed unreal. But these things really happened, and the injustices and prejudices of that day continue, perhaps in a lower key.

Our “leaders” continue to try to prohibit the poor and minorities from voting.

One in fifteen African American men are in prison, compared to about one in 106 white men. Pwople of color make up about 30% of the U.S. population, and about 60% of those imprisoned. One of three black men can expect to go to prison in their lifetime.

African American women are three times more likely than white women to be incarcerated.

We have made progress. The current President of the United States is black. Colin Powell and Condaleeza Rice were highly respected Secretaries of State. There are black representatives in Congress. Some our most beloved celebrities are black, including Bill Cosby and many others.

My community in Silicon Valley, California is very diverse, with many engineers from China and East India and Americans of color.

We still have a long way to go.

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Tax and financial advice from the Silicon Valley expert.