Monday, January 19, 2009

Martin Luther King

(Dr. Martin Luther King speaking just one day before his murder)

As a parent, so many of my experiences and views are colored by my relationship with my child. Her view, unlike mine, is not boring or caught up in cliches, or tainted by political correctness, is always, for better or worse, quite candid.

So when she is off from school for a holiday, I always engage her in conversation and query her to be sure that she is not just thinking she has off from school to watch more Sponge Bob.

Today, I asked her about Martin Luther King Jr. and she responded that he had worked to make "the laws equal to everyone", which I think is as good as any seven year old, or many adults for that matter, could come up with. She further tied in the recent election of Barack Obama as evidence of the fruition of King's impeccable work.

Through her words and from what I already know, I see that Dr. King's Dream is becoming more and more a reality, but I also am not deluded enough to believe that the work for racial and economic equality is finished. Indeed, the same child who raised my hopes also gave me a reminder that when it comes to race, we still have a great deal of work to do. She recounted to me a conversation that she overheard, where another child had made the comment that "Martin Luther King Day was just a day for black people to not have to go to work". The comment was bad enough, but what was worse was the fact that the adult that was with these children did not correct the child, but instead just laughed.

It was a reminder that the fight against bigotry is no longer one that is waged so much against institutions or hopelessly racist politicians, but one that occurs in the homes and schools of America. A fight that will have to continue, so long as the outdated construct of race exists.


At 5:04 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have to agree with you in that there is a long road to go but it is a two way street. As you know I post on the WURD site and there is a poster, AFRO, who is so " one sided" and not, as MLK or the hope as most preceive will happen with the new administration, but he projects hatred toward those not of his color and the violence within his "community" is caused by those who have interests in controlling that "community".
If I question his comments I'm called a " pig white troll" yada yada. This is the two way street I was referring to.

Do I hope..yes...but not in my life time. People like he...and yes..people I know...well.. we shall see..and believe

jon pisano

At 3:57 PM , Blogger Admin said...

Congrats on your nomination at In Cold Blog for Best Crime Blog and Blogger of 2008!!

At 6:17 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with you. Things are certainly much different from when I was born in the sixties. However, many people have not changed their way of thinking that much. Even this morning (Martin Luther King, Jr. Day) I have heard that this is a Black holiday and that MLK, Jr. fought for the rights of African Americans. While I'm sure that being Black, MLK, Jr. was mainly concerned with Black people, I believe he cared for all people and I am sure we have to recognize that the civil rights movement benefitted all Americans. I you look at film footage from the pass, you can always find signs that say "No Blacks, No Jews." The civil rights movement benefitted Blacks, Whites, Asian, Latins, Jews, Catholics, etc. When everyone regard MLK, Jr. as simply a great civil rights leader and MLK, Jr. Day as a holiday for all Americans, then we will know that things are getting better.


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