Monday, January 17, 2011

MLK Day Remembrance

Today we commemorate the birth of Reverand Doctor Martin Luther King, Jr

Since our birthdays are so close together and I'm a history buff, I've always been interested in the life and ideas of MLK and have admired him as a man and leader.  He was no saint. He was not a messiah.  He was a man, broken and flawed, but in a lot of ways a better man than I have become.  I may not agree with everything he said nor every stand he took, but he at least had the courage to stand up for what he believed and take the beating that those beliefs might bring.

I believe that due at least in part to his life's work, even though we still have a long way to go, the racial problem of our country is closer to a solution than it was when he began his work in the early 1950's.  He kept enough of a lid on the parts of the civil rights movement that wanted to break out in armed revolution, and was able to hold enough feet to the fire that major strides were made in our nation's search for equality. 

I listened to several of his speeches today.  Here are two of his more famous speeches, but I urge you to seek out his others, especially the ones you will disagree with, and give them a listen. They are a window on a time where "civil discourse" could still be found with the progressive left and a man who could make an argument without it becoming an attack. He could discuss why he opposed the Vietnam War without making it into an attack on the soldiers fighting it.  He could speak out for the poor without calling for the destruction of the rich.


Joshkie said...


Old NFO said...

He was a conservative Republican... I don't care what they say...

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