The Niemoller Legacy

Brain Dropping #85

 
              The Niemoller Legacy.    Martin Niemoller was an anti-Nazi Lutheran Pastor who believed that the Protestant churches of Nazi Germany, by doing nothing, were complicit in the horrors of the holocaust and other crimes against humanity.  Here is his famous quote:
 
                             “First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out –
                                                   because I was not a socialist.
                             Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out –
                                                   because I was not a trade unionist.
                             Then they came for the jews, and I did not speak out –
                                                   because I was not a jew.,
                             Then they came for the Jehovah’s Witnesses, and I did not speak out –
                                                   because I was not a Jehovah’s Witness.
                             Then they came for me, and there was no one left to speak for me.”
 
                I’ll take the liberty of expanding Niemoller’s quote:
 
                              “First they jailed black men for years for possession of small amounts of pot-
                                          I did not speak out because I was not black and the cops looked the other way.
                              Then they came for Muslims for unfounded charges of terrorism.-
                                          I did not speak out because I was not a Muslim.
                              Then they broke labor’s right to collective bargaining and a decent wage-
                                          I did not speak out because I was not a union man.
                              Then they denied the right of due process to anyone they arbitrarily chose-
                                          I did not speak out because they did not chose me.
                              Then they put people illegally under surveillance, violating the Constitution-
                                          I did not speak out for I had nothing to hide and felt anonymous.
                              Then they began deporting undocumented immigrants and their children-
                                          I did not speak out because I was a native born citizen.
                              Then they began bombing innocent women and children in foreign lands-
                                          I did not speak out because my life was comfortable and safe.
                              Then they allowed bankers to cheat and get away with  their millions –
                                          I did not speak out because I foolishly thought my money was safe.
                              Then they passed unconstitutional laws to block minorities from voting-
                                          I did not speak out because I am not a member of a minority.
                              Then they came for me, and there was no one left to speak out for me.”   
                              
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