Michael Knox, Chair of the Foundation, presented the award during a forum on September 23 in New York City. In his remarks Knox said, “Thank you, Ajamu, for your outstanding domestic and international activism to end wars and militarism. We applaud your long and distinguished record of working for social justice, human rights, civil rights, and peace. Many antiwar organizations have benefited from your innovative leadership and consultation. You are a force in revitalizing the Black antiwar tradition.
By Ajamu Baraka for AjamuBaraka.com. In his speech at Riverside Church, King not only criticized U.S. actions in Vietnam but identified the cultural pathologies at the center of U.S. society. “I am convinced that if we are to get on to the right side of the world revolution, we as a nation must undergo a radical revolution of values,” he said. “We must rapidly begin the shift from a thing-oriented society to a person-oriented society. When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, extreme materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered.” 50 years later, what rational person can honestly argue against the position that the U.S. is still the greatest purveyor of violence on the planet?