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Not in My Name

Hello, I participated in the most incredibly diverse rally in front of the United Nations at Dag Hammarskjold Plaza. Here are my remarks:

Cynthia McKinney Remarks Al Nakba Rally,
“Not in My Name”
United Nations, New York
May 16, 2008

On my birthday last year, I declared my independence from a national
leadership that, through its votes in support of the war machine, is
now complicit in war crimes, torture, crimes against humanity, and
crimes against the peace.

I declared my independence from every bomb dropped, every veteran
maimed, and every child killed.

I noted that the Democratic leadership in Congress had failed to
restore this country to Constitutional rule by repealing the Patriot
Acts, the Secret Evidence Act, and the Military Commissions Act.

That it had aided and abetted illegal spying against the American
people. And that it took impeachment off the table.

In addition, the Democratic Congressional leadership failed to
promote the economic integrity of this country by not repealing the
Bush tax cuts. They failed to institute a livable wage,
Medicare-for-all health care, and gave even more money to the
Pentagon as it misuses our hard-earned dollars.

We can add to that list, too, an abject failure to stand up for human
rights and dignity.

If the Democratic and Republican leadership won’t respect the right
of return for Hurricanes Katrina and Rita survivors, how can we
expect them to champion the right of return for Palestinians?

If this country’s leadership tolerates the wanton murder of unarmed
black and Latino men by law enforcement officials—extra-judicial
killings—how can we expect them to stop or even speak out against
targeted assassinations in the Middle East?

If the Democratic and Republican leadership accept ethnic cleansing
in this country by way of gentrification and predatory lending, why
should we expect them to put an end to it in Palestine?

If the leadership of this country impedes self-determination for
native peoples in this country, why should we expect them to support
indigenous rights for anyone abroad?

And sadly, the sensationalist corporate media would rather trick us
into thinking that reporting on a pastor, a former Vice Presidential
nominee, and a former cable TV magnate constitutes this country’s
much-needed discussion of its own apartheid past and present, so why
should we expect an honest discussion of apartheid and Zionism?

I hope by now it is clear. Our values will never be reflected in
public policy as long as our political parties and our country remain
hijacked.

Hijacked by false patriots who usurp the applause of the people and
all the while betray our values.

I’ve decided that neither the Democrats nor the Republicans will
operate any longer as business as usual—not in my name.

That Democrats and Republicans will use my tax dollars and betray my
values, not one day longer—not in my name.

That neither the Democrats nor the Republicans have earned my most
precious political asset—my vote.

And that now is the time to do some things I’ve never done before in
order to have some things I’ve never had before.

And so here today, I declare my independence from weapons transfers:
including Apache Helicopters; F’16s; sidewinder, hellfire, and
Stinger missiles.

I declare my independence from occupation, demolished homes,
political prisoners, and babies dying at checkpoints.

I declare my independence from UN vetoes, expropriated land, stolen
resources, and the installation of puppet regimes.

I declare my independence from all forms of dehumanization and am not
afraid to speak truth to power.

And I am happy to join with peace-loving people around the world who
know that there can be no peace without justice.

Let us never tire in our work for justice.

Thank you.

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