Monday, January 21, 2008

Shed a little light

Today is Martin Luther King day, which, it seems, has become mostly a day off from school and a day for politicians to make speeches. I always try to stop on MLK day and think for a moment of what his life and work have meant. It is a contemplation that is both heartening and disheartening. Without the Civil Rights Movement would Barack Obama be running for president with the real possibility of winning? This is only one indication of how far we have come and yet the disheartening part is that the ugliness of racism still exists in this country. The video above shows so many photos that bring back memories of those days, in the '60s, set to the wonderful James Taylor song, and at the end refers to the current day case of the Jena 6 and the despicable events that occurred in Jena, LA. I remember those early times so well and the stirring words of Dr. King and the triumphs and the tragedies that have all been dimmed with time.

Martin Luther King was a hero of my youth and he imagined for all of us a better world. My hope is that his work and his influence have not been forgotten. I fear that perhaps they have.


  1. Anonymous4:17 PM

    As I was preparing what I wanted to say for the children's time at church I was asking myself why this one holiday is not a celebration. And I believe it is because King's work is not yet finished. It has been 45 years since Dr. King talked about his dream. The children of my church came up with a pretty good list for choosing friends according to the "contents of their character." I hope they all take that list forward in their lives--it will help to achieve the dream for us all. And then maybe, MLK day CAN be a day of celebration.

  2. Anonymous10:32 PM

    Thanks, Terry. Outside it's 18 below zero this evening -- inside it's cozy and warm. That's the contrast I feel when I think about bigotry and hatred -- warm, decent, loving vs. the worst nastiness humans can perpetrate on one another.

    I have a wonderful story from Basin, about bigotry and forgiveness -- I'll regale you with when we return. We head out in a about a week.