Keeping Martin Luther King, Jr.’s dream alive

Published 11:27 am Friday, January 13, 2023

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Monday is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. Although it is a holiday for many, it is a time to reflect on how far we have come since the days of slavery in America and just where we are today in regards to equal rights for all America.
We still have the poor, the uneducated, the unemployed, and the helpless among us. Even though we have come a long way, we still have miles to go to improve living conditions for people of all color, be they red, yellow, black or white. The question is how can we get there.
We live in a world more divided than ever. For some in our community, Monday will be a day of volunteering, bridge building, and the pursuit of solutions that move our country and state closer to Martin Luther King, Jr.’s dream that “one day we live in a nation where people will not be judged by the color of their skin but the content of their character.”
King’s dream is a reminder that we must work toward a community, a state, and a nation in which everyone is cared for, one without poverty, hunger, and hate.
This call to action is nothing new, but it is worth repeating considering the divisive state we find ourselves in over, not just one issue, but many: voting rights, racial inequality and economic justice, global pandemics, and so forth.
Dreaming is not enough, and it was not enough in King’s day. Some of the issues that deprive and divide us today sent King and other civil rights protestors to Washington. Action is still required on the part of all citizens if this nation is ever united and reaches its potential.
Black Americans have come a long way, and their progress would make Dr. King proud. But there’s so much more work left to be done. A look at the equity landscape shows that Dr. King would still be fighting for quality education for all children, access to quality healthcare, equity in homeownership, jobs, justice and peace.
Honoring Dr. King on the holiday is a must, but more significantly we must continue to discover who he was and what he stood for. His words are just as meaningful and relevant today as they were when he lived. And, we still have a lot to learn from a man who had the faith of a mustardseed and unconquerable hope for the future.
We must open our eyes and consider how others experience and see the world. We must consider how we are different, yet we share the same dream. We must listen to each other, listen for shared feelings and places of connection. Once we do this, in the words of Dr. King, “we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope.”

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