Photo from Raven Foundation
Whenever Martin Luther King, Jr. Day comes around, I am reminded of Dr. King’s teachings and his life. I have had the privilege of going to The King Center down in Atlanta several times. When you see all the displays, you are literally walking through history. As Martin Luther King (MLK) was fighting for civil rights, the United States was turmoil. Not only was there sharp racial divide across America, but there was a strong anti-war sentiment towards the war in Vietnam.
Dr. King’s fight to stop racial segregation and discrimination through civil disobedience and non-violent demonstrations were embraced by many in the movement. It takes great strength to resist the desire to retaliate and get revenge.
Beyond all the awards and recognition that he received, Dr. King wanted to be remembered as a servant and someone who fought for justice. In a sermon that he gave, Dr. King rhetorically asked what he would like people to remember him by and he said,
I want you to say that day that I tried to be right on the war question. I want you to be able to say that day that I did try to feed the hungry. I want you to be able to say that day that I did try in my life to clothe those who were naked. I want you to say on that day that I did try in my life to visit those who were in prison. And I want you to say that I tried to love and serve humanity.
Yes, if you want to say that I was a drum major. Say that I was a drum major for justice. Say that I was a drum major for peace. I was a drum major for righteousness. And all of the other shallow things will not matter.”
Dr. King’s drum major for justice, peace, and righteousness are still being heard today throughout the world. We need to see another MLK in our generation who will address some of the biggest issues of our time.