There are 45 million Americans living in poverty in the United States. And as many of us know, poverty is not color blind.

During this week’s Congressional Black Caucus Message to America, Rep. Barbara Lee addressed the nation’s ongoing struggle against poverty. She quoted Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s 1968 Two Americas Speech, saying, “One America is overflowing with the milk of prosperity and the honey of opportunity, while the other America transforms with the buoyancy of hope into the fatigue of despair.”

Lee added that Dr. King’s words were backed up by the Kerner Commission Report that stated, “We are moving towards two societies, one Black, one White. Separate and unequal.”

“Today there are still two Americas, they are separate and unequal,” said Lee. “The poverty rate of African-Americans is nearly triple the rate of White Americans, where one in four African-Americans and one in three African-American children lives in poverty.”

“That is simply unacceptable. That’s not the American Dream.”

To aid in the fight against poverty in America, the CBC – under the direction of Congressman Bobby Scott – has crafted the CBC’s Alternative Budget. According to Congresswoman Lee, the CBC’s Alternative Budget invests in American families and builds pathways out of poverty.

Hear what else she had to say in the video above, and find previous CBC Messages To America on YouTube.

For more information about the Congressional Black Caucus, visit cbc-butterfield.house.gov.

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