Today is a day where we remember Martin Luther King Jr. and all of the good that he did. I am thankful that there is a day to honor a great man who fought hard for justice. One thing I do often is revisit different things Martin Luther King Jr. has said and I thought it would be timely to share them here!
“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”
“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy”
“…I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word”
“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere”
“The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice.”
It’s nice to read quotes and memorialize a man who did such great work, but it can’t just stop at that and I think we forget that too easily. In an interesting article about streets named after MLK it says this, “There’s a way in which the process of memorialization is sometimes the first step in collective forgetting. We name our monuments, we name our streets, and they’re meant to do the work of memory for us.” That’s not how it should be.
I think this is a great day to remember a great man, but also a day to remember how much work we still have to do. How much work we still have to do in bringing about economic justice, racial justice and equality. People say it’s gone and that we’re all equal, but we’re not..just take a stroll through your city, talk to a teacher about the roadblocks in the education system, ask an undocumented teenager about their dream to go to college and how it may never happen, think about how I can get pulled over in my community and asked, “why are you in this neighborhood” but my African-American friends seem to get pulled over for no reason at all, read the news to hear about things like how Philadelphia choose to close 23 public schools, but build a $400 million prison, read The New Jim Crow…the list could go on and on. The world is broken, we are broken and it can be hard not to get overwhelmed by it all, but we have to keep moving forward. Keep moving forward on a road towards justice, peace, reconciliation, restoration and equality.
Like Martin Luther King Jr. said, “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.” So don’t stay silent. Remember to take a stand for what is right, dare to dream the world can be a better place and do your damndest to make it happen.