Posted by: Dan | January 15, 2007

In Honor of Martin Luther King, Jr.

Like Abel Pharmboy, I don’t have much specifically in mind to say for MLK Day, other than some message of a just, equitable future for America. Mike provides the fodder, with a great speech on economic justice from Dr King to striking Memphis sanitation workers in 1968. Both Abel and Mike have passages highlighted, and I’ll draw attention to yet another passage from the speech:

…I will hear America through her historians years and years to come saying, “We built gigantic buildings to kiss the sky. We build gargantuan bridges to span the seas. Through our spaceships we were able to carve highways through the stratosphere. Through our airplanes we were able to dwarf distance and place time in chains. Through our submarines we were able to penetrate oceanic depths.”

But it seems that I can hear the God of the universe saying, “even though you’ve done all of that, I was hungry and you fed me not. I was naked and ye clothed me not. The children of my sons and daughters were in need of economic security, and you didn’t provide for them. So you cannot enter the kingdom of greatness.” This may well be the indictment on America that says in Memphis to the mayor, to the power structure, “If you do it unto the least of these my brethren, you do it unto me.”…

Now, I don’t think there’s actually such a kingdom of greatness, or a God even, but it’s this sort of humility, fairness, and right-action that strikes a cord with me. The fabric of our nation was written with such intentions in mind – concepts of inalienable rights; a classless society; the American Dream for all; and respect for hard work, not merely birthright and inheritance.



%d bloggers like this: