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Martin Luther King Holiday

January 27, 1986

Roger Wilkins noted in his article (Opinion, Jan. 19), "A Dream Denied," that "50% of all black children under the age of 6 live in poverty."

Who, in this incredibly affluent and altruistic nation, could be so callous as to ignore such a staggering statistic? The collective consciousness of the American people must vehemently reject, with all the resources at their disposal, the Reagan Administration's acquiescence to the fact that 50% of all black children, under the age of 6 live in poverty.

The aggregate indignation need not derive from a particular political creed or economic philosophy. One needs only to look into the face of an innocent child. Where poverty has excised a child's boundless enthusiasm, ceaseless curiosity, or uninhibited joy, the cost has been too great.

It is ironic (surrealistic) that the President seized the media opportunity of Dr. King's birthday to pose with the same children who have been the silent, innocent targets of broad, deep cuts in education and social programs. As long as society (read the Administration) lacks the compassion and courage of Dr. King's vision, we will never "deserve the children."

WILLIAM F. CARROLL

Altadena

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