Shafer says Tree of Greed must come down Chico's MLK celebration features Poor People's Campaign rep

by Karen Laslo

Greg Shafer, Northern California representative to the Poor People’s Campaign, told a Chico audience of about 200 people Sunday that the “American Tree of Greed must come down,” and that it’s responsible for the environmental degradation, endless wars and the prison-industrial complex that cause suffering, in particular for the poor.

photo by Karen Laslo
Greg Shafer speaks at Trinity United during MLK celebration Sunday.

Shafer asked, “But who will cut the Tree of Greed down?” Not the government, not the rich and powerful, not the corporations, he said, responding to his own question. Shafer said America must listen to the African-Americans who’ve been warning for years that the tree’s fruit is toxic. Shafer told the crowd, “We need a new Poor People’s Campaign.”

Shafer was the keynote speaker at the annual MLK Beloved Community event at the Trinity United Methodist Church in Chico. In 1968, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., spoke about how morally wrong it was that U.S. leaders were sending poor people to war to kill others. But, Shafer said, making the powerful uncomfortable can be dangerous. Soon after that speech, King was assassinated.

King’s birthday was Jan. 15, but is often celebrated on the third Monday of the month, which is today, a holiday.

photo by Karen Laslo

Karen Laslo is a freelance contributor to ChicoSol.

1 thought on “Shafer says Tree of Greed must come down Chico's MLK celebration features Poor People's Campaign rep

  1. Hey – thanks for this article, Karen. Greg Shafer is a rising star in the grass roots movement for economic justice. His words inspire action! If you want to get involved with the local Poor People’s Campaign or the Chico Homeless Union, call 530 433-9707 or send an email to .

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