Most people know Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. for his rights for Civil Rights. But just as strongly as he fought during the Civil Rights Movement, he was adamant in his opposition to poverty. Before his assassination in 1968, Dr. King was organizing the Poor People’s March on Washington as part of his larger Poor People’s Campaign that would fight for economic justice and equality for the poor in the United States. Here are some of his most popular quotes on US and global poverty and the importance of its eradication.

“As long as there is poverty in this world, no man can be totally rich even if he has a billion dollars.”

Dr. King, “The American Dream” speech, 1961.

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”

Dr. King, “Letter from Birmingham City Jail”, 1963

“God never intended for one group of people to live in superfluous inordinate wealth, while others live in abject deadening poverty.”

Dr. King, “Strength to Love”, 1963

“A second evil which plagues the modern world is that of poverty. Like a monstrous octopus, it projects its nagging, prehensile tentacles in lands and villages all over the world. Almost two-thirds of the peoples of the world go to bed hungry at night. They are undernourished, ill-housed, and shabbily clad. Many of them have no houses or beds to sleep in. Their only beds are the sidewalks of the cities and the dusty roads of the villages. Most of these poverty-stricken children of God have never seen a physician or a dentist.”

Dr. King, Nobel Peace Prize address, 1964

“There is nothing new about poverty. What is new, however, is that we have the resources to get rid of it.”

Dr. King, Nobel Peace Prize address, 1964

“The rich nations must use their vast resources of wealth to develop the underdeveloped, school the unschooled, and feed the unfed. Ultimately a great nation is a compassionate nation. No individual or nation can be great if it does not have a concern for ‘the least of these.’”

Dr. King, Nobel Peace Prize address, 1964

“The time is always right to do what is right.”

Dr. King, Oberlin College Commencement speech, 1965

“While millions enjoy an unexampled opulence in developed nations, ten thousand people die of hunger each and every day of the year in the undeveloped world.”

Dr. King, “Let My People Go” speech, 1965

“The time has come for us to civilize ourselves by the total, direct and immediate abolition of poverty”

Dr. King, “Where do we go from Here: Chaos or Community”, 1967