Speaking at the dedication ceremony for a new monument to her father, the Rev. Bernice King said Martin Luther King Jr. would have been heartened by the Occupy Wall Street protests and larger 99 Percent Movement. “I hear my father saying what we are seeing now all across the streets of America and the world is a freedom explosion,” she said, adding that we should move beyond or conception of King’s work as just about “racial justice” to include “economic justice”:
“We are being pulled from the familiar place and comfort place of “I have a dream” to focus on another aspect of Dr. King’s life. Perhaps, the postponement [of the original dedication] was a divine interuption to remind us of the King that moved us beyond the dream of racial justice to action and work of economic justice.
Perhaps, God wanted to remind us that when our father was taken from us, he was in the midst of starting a poor people’s campaign where he was galvanizing poor people from all walks of life to converge on this nation’s capital and stay here and occupy this place until there was change in the economic system and a better distribution of wealth. [...]
In fact, we told us we must become maladjusted to certain social ills. We should never adjust to the one percent controlling more than 40 percent of the wealth.”
She added that we should “never adjust” to record-high unemployment, people lacking health care because they can’t afford it, “a judicial system that allows to take a life when guilt is yet in question,” and other miscarriages of justice. But she called on protesters to conduct themselves on a “higher order” in the quest for justice.