I had a dream the other night and in it was Dr. King.
I stared in awestruck wonder as my eyes began to sting.
The expression on his face was so solemn and yet so kind,
I wondered if he knew about the turmoil in my mind.
What could I say to him about the troubles we still know?
And I wondered if he knew about the debt that whites still owe?
I implored him with my mind to see history through my eyes
and this distorted world of whites who still hail him with their lies.
I wanted him to see the view from where we stand
beneath a concrete bridge and homeless in this land,
where Jim Crow still exists from when hatred was unleashed
and though he too was jailed, millions weren’t released.
Today, they’ll praise his name and say that things have changed
that they no longer burn a cross or watch a Black man hanged.
But we all know the truth in that lynching still exists
and I see the whip slice forward, there’s the echo of its hiss.
The view from where I stand is not from on a mountain top
as I look upon my brother, killed by a racist cop.
His blood still stains the ground and as I turn to Dr. King,
I extend my hands towards him for to him, I want to cling,
to beg him to come back to us, but he only shakes his head.
I then realize tis a dream and that Dr. King is dead!
Shelby I. Courtland
©2018 Shelby I. Courtland
As we, again, celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Day which this year happens to fall on his birthday, we will hear from people who would assassinate Dr. King a million times over if they could. We will hear from the hypocrites who pretend to pay homage to a man who was not for corporations and who was against the mis-treatment of the poor and yet, on the front page of every newspaper, magazine, television screen and any other type of news media, we will be bombarded with images of Dr. King and we shall hear his “I Have A Dream!” speech another trillion times and then, that’s it folks!
Not a thing has changed since Dr. King’s speeches, marches, protests and nothing will because simply posting a picture of him and recalling his words does nothing. If anything, things have gotten much worse.
The University of Maryland Medical Center’s top executive apologized to a patient who was discharged and found on the street wearing only a thin hospital gown and socks outside its midtown facility, calling it an isolated incident.
“We take full responsibility for this failure,” Dr. Mohan Suntha said during a Thursday afternoon news conference. The hospital did not provide “basic humanity and compassion,” he added.
Hospital officials have not said what the woman was treated for in the emergency room or why she was left out in the cold near a public transit bus stop. Mohan said she received proper care while in the hospital and that the incident happened after discharge.
As we celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Day as well as his birthday, just a few days ago, another Black woman was thrown out of a hospital by security, clad only in a hospital gown and socks. While she was wandering aimlessly around, with no obvious idea of what to do, another Black man decided to tape the incident because he was absolutely beyond horrified over witnessing this shocking event.
Because the event was taped and posted on Youtube, now there is an uproar about ‘patient dumping’ that seems to happen to mostly Black patients and the hospital’s top executive stated that this patient “received proper care while in the hospital and that the incident happened after discharge.”
Excuse me! But when did it become the norm to discharge patients in a hospital gown and socks in the middle of a frigid winter’s night? I can tell you that of the times that I have been discharged from a hospital, you had damn well better believe that I was not discharged in a hospital gown and hospital socks and told to “Suck it!” as this woman was apparently told to do! How many times have you seen a patient sitting in a chair being wheeled out of a hospital and to a bus stop by security while still wearing a hospital gown(open in the back) and socks? And if you read the article, it mentions that this happens more times than we know and especially to the homeless. Go figure!
And yet, we are really going to celebrate Dr. King’s legacy? Is this his legacy? Seriously??!! We really want to go there??!!! When Dr. King, along with his civil rights organization, the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, decided to launch a campaign to highlight the many problems facing the poor, the result of that today is to put poor patients out on the street in the middle of a frigid winter’s night in nothing but a thin hospital gown that doesn’t even close in the back and a pair of hospital socks? But that is an acceptable discharge according to the hospital’s executive director? Because the hospital is responsible for you from the time you are admitted until the time you are SAFELY discharged. And being sent out in that condition, especially in a city like Baltimore, is anything but SAFELY discharged.
How is this even happening? It is happening because poor people are not even thought of as human even in a hospital. Read about Anna Brown and Barbara Dawson and then come talk to me about how Dr. King’s legacy is alive and well because these two women are dead since they were treated just as this woman in Baltimore was treated.
So, go ahead, post your blogs commemorating Dr. King and espouse upon his legacy as though that has any meaning whatsoever because quite obviously, none of us know a damn thing about how we are supposed to be treating each other and we don’t want to know. Can you imagine Dr. King, with a smartphone in his hand, more worried about getting the latest model over helping some poor, homeless and sick woman find her way? Do you think that Dr. King would give a damn about a Wi-Fi connection? How does that help feed the hungry? How does that clothe the naked, like this woman who was dumped out of a hospital in the cold? How does that help a single mom who is about to become homeless with her kids? A mom who just recently worked for one of the Sam’s Clubs that Wal-Mart just shut down without any warning whatsoever which means for those of you who want to blame the victim for their troubles, who is to blame when the company you work for closes its doors and you only find out that you don’t have a job when you report to work?
Yes indeed, let us cease and desist with all social programs because the poor should just die already as this is why we celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Day! Let the hypocrisy begin!