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Friday, June 26, 2020


by George Salamon

Graphic by Know Your Meme

"Put your money where your mouth is."
by Howard Washington Odum. 
Indianapolis: The Bobbs-Merrill Company, 1928: 132.

Words and gestures demand no sacrifice:
BLM marches for criminal justice,
We could sure use more of that.
Corporations commit to workplace equality,
We could sure use more of that.
Progressives call for wealth redistribution,
We could sure use more of that.
Liberals seek equality in healthcare access,
We could sure use more of that.
But what are they doing to get more?
I propose 10 years of a tithe for justice
And equality at work, in the doctor's office,
In courts of law, in schoolrooms and
Lecture halls across our divided nation,
Ten percent for ten years, collected from
The institutions, organizations and persons
Now placing ads, shouting and painting
Slogans, writing columns and letters and
Op-eds advocating a life of dignity and
Freedom from want for the working poor,
The unemployed poor, the homeless poor,
For Black and Brown, Yellow and White
People in the Rust Belt, in Appalachia and
On Farms, in crowded and sunless apartments,
Sleeping on kitchen or bathroom floors or in
Shelters seeking a safe place for themselves
And their children, blocks away from the condos
Where the CEOs, COOs, CFOs, Esq.s, MDs,
CPAs, MBAs and their lobbyists allow a few
Crumbs to fall off their richly laden tables for
Those "less fortunate" at Thanksgiving and Xmas.
Put your money where some of you have put your
Mouths and signatures and contribute from your
Billions in assets to gradually transform a decaying
Society into a working community, acknowledging
That "happy days" are not the privilege of a very
Few in a land of vast natural and human resources,
And that we will never be in the American experiment
Or enterprise together unless you do better by
Doing good.

George Salamon casts a cold eye on what our "meritocracy" is doing to, but not for, working-class and middle-class Americans,  but will wait and see how many mean what they now say—at least for a while, in St. Louis, MO.