What kind of depraved reality do we live in where twisted assassins and befuddled politicians garner 24/7 media coverage while we celebrate such a genuinely good & honest human being for just one day out of the year?
Martin Luther King Jr., to me, represents all that is right with humanity. I refuse to use words like ‘was’ when referring to Dr. King since I believe that his message is still being heard, loud and clear, even decades after his violent death. His message is one of hope, peace, compassion, unity, and humility. That much can be learned, for sure, through basic school textbooks. However, his is also a message of perseverance, determination, and ruthlessness.
What?! Martin Luther King… Ruthless?
You’re damn right. Imagine a society so bent on denying you your basic human and civil rights. Imagine a system so intent on denying you and your people their voice within that system. Imagine crowds so angry and hateful that you are scared to step out in front of them.
Now, imagine that you are a rallying voice, a small flame growing ever larger; imagine that you carry the hopes and dreams of a people squarely on your tired shoulders. Imagine that in order to carry those hopes and dreams - that have been placed in your charge - to a place they’ve never been allowed to be, you must defy the society that denies you, confront the system that ignores you, and speak to those crowds that frighten you.
That is the reality that Martin Luther King Jr. lived through every single day. You cannot tell me that he did not have at least one ruthless bone in his body that he relied upon to continue his fight, his journey, his duty.
It is that ruthlessness that we should all carry with us as we move forward in a world that seems to be growing much darker as of late. While Dr. King is a symbol & testament to what we all should be… The manner of his death is a stark reminder of the hate that will always be present in an attempt to squash any hope of peace and harmony.
We cannot let that happen. We cannot allow a very special Dream to die.