As Dr. King said in 1967, “We believe the highest patriotism demands the ending of the war and the opening of a bloodless war to final victory over racism and poverty.”  Then, as it is now, ensuring that society works for ALL is the highest form of patriotism. This launched the “Poor People’s Campaign.”  Unfortunately for us all, Dr. King was murdered just a year later and the march he hoped for never happened. The Economic Bill of Rights never passed. Now the plutocracy is on the ascendent and 2012 will be a crucial year in the history of the Republic. Will we be one nation, indivisible, with liberty, equality, justice and prosperity for all, or will we be two nations separate and unequal?


Some claim that they are patriots

While repeatedly choosing to ignore

The persistence of injustice and

The pervasiveness of war

Some say that they are patriots

And yet they never seem to see

The rich just getting richer

While millions drown in poverty

Some believe that they are patriots

And wave our founding writ

Before attacking women

In a war they’ll  never quit

Some think that they are patriots

But never give a thought

To the principles they betray

By the fact that they are bought

Some pretend that they are patriots

Though they hardly act that way

They sell their souls for money

And never show dismay

Some truly know that they are patriots

And resolutely take a stand

For the achievement of equality

And justice throughout the land

Some prove that they are patriots

Those of the highest form

They rise to the enduring challenge

And fight against the gathering storm

Some show that they are patriots

And call for a genuinely just war

Against the scourge of racism

And an end to poverty from now till evermore

© 2012, Larry Conley. All rights reserved.

Larry Conley (36 Posts)

I am a veteran of the U. S. Army. My good fortune is to be married to a wonderful woman and have two remarkable twin sons who are making their way in the world. I taught civics in a Pittsburgh area middle school. I am a cat and dog lover.


  1. Larry, once more you inspire us with your words. Ever the patriot in the truest sense, you make us want to be better citizens.

    • Larry Conley (Author)


      As so often before, you touch my heart.

      I am trying my friend to raise a banner to which the wise and honest can repair.

      Despite the shortcomings and abject failures of the past, this nation was intended to be better than it yet is.

      As Franklin remarked, we have a Republic if we can keep it.

      It is up to us and it takes more than voting once every four years. We have to remember what the principles and purposes are and stand with them and work for them.

      Thanks again for your encouraging words.

      As ever,


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