It is NOT Charlottesville, Va…
08.13.2017 by @Reform_Justice
… a great man once stated prophetically (on the day before his execution at the hands of a racially motivated oppressor). The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. spoke these words on April 3, 1968 at the Mason Temple in Memphis, Tennessee. The next day, Dr. King was taken from us by an assassin’s bullet. One of many Civil Rights leaders unceremoniously gunned down or otherwise taken from us during that turbulent and fateful, disgraceful era. King was at once prophet and visionary. During his last year leading up to Memphis, Dr. King was extremely troubled and at odds with his fate and the fate of the Movement he had come to embody. King was a reluctant leader at first, yet ultimately deciding that his own fate was immaterial when weighed against the desired outcome. That outcome being equality and a society that pays no special attention to race, color, creed, sex, or gender.
King’s “Mountaintop” speech in Memphis the day before he was killed stands as a poetic and historic statement with his “I Have a Dream” speech from the Washington, DC Mall after the peaceful March on Washington event. Delivered 100 years following the Emancipation Proclamation on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. In front of 250,000 people of all colors and ethnicities, Dr. King laid out the vision for a tolerant future. Remembering the mistakes of the past, but warning that people of color will never be satisfied without equal and fair treatment under law and recognized for the content of their character, not the color of their skin.
“Free at last, free at last! Thank God Almighty, we’re FREE AT LAST!”
Apparently, I was born with no bias nor racism within my genome. I am not special. Psychology and Biology teach us none of us are. We learn and develop our personalities and beliefs based largely on input during developmental stages. Racism and HATE is learned behavior in society, it is NOT inherent in our makeup.
As a child of the ‘70s, I can attest to racial tensions and to wondering why. I had friends of all colors and backgrounds. What the hell does the color of your skin or your ethnic or religious belief have to do with you as a person? For whatever reason, this was my thinking as a child. I assumed at the time this was the feeling of every youngster I knew because, well why wouldn’t it be? I am White but some of my best friends from childhood were of other ethnic backgrounds. In my naïve youth, I specifically remember thinking that once my generation takes power, all these issues will be dealt with and yes, Promised Land.
The events in 2016 involving multiple killings of Blacks at the hands of mostly White Cops were eye-opening. As a White person, I cried. We were in Milwaukee while the scenes were still smoldering. We watched, seemingly every night last Summer as more killings rang out across the country. A year later (and apparently, LE reigning in its’ policies across the Land), we have now been set upon by a backlash of the White supremacist or ALT Right as they like to be called.
Neo-Nazi organizations are alive and well in 2017 America. All the intrusive abilities of the US Government are seemingly unable to sniff out domestic terrorism. Despite the fact the Government has the ability to see and hear any and every conversation you or I have ever had online. See the Daniel Snowden situation.
The events in Charlottesville, Virginia this weekend were shocking to say the least. My heart goes out to the victims and families. My heart also goes out to a diverse Nation that seemingly can’t get it right, as a society. How in the HELL can this Country profess to be a moral or ethical “Leader” of the Free World if we can’t take care of business at home? How is it we continually see racism marring our landscape? Someone took a car and used it as a weapon to attack and mow down innocent people. How is this not Domestic Terrorism?
We, as a People, have faced adversity before. We will face it again. How is it that people of all colors and ethnicities will not come together despite Governmental issues or mandates. MLK has seen the Promised Land…
…It is not Charlotteville, Virginia circa 2017. It is not Milwaukee Wisconsin, Falcon Heights Minnesota, Tulsa Oklahoma, Charlotte North Carolina, Baton Rouge Louisiana, or Ferguson Missouri. Nor is it anywhere involving a relatively young and still developing Nation calling itself The UNITED STATES of America. The rest of the World has been torn asunder by countless wars, slavery, genocide, religious persecution, and all manors of discrimination for centuries. Man’s inhumanity to Man is well documented throughout history.
Martin Luther King, Jr., when he spoke of his desire for a future where Blacks and Whites, among others, would coexist harmoniously as equals had it right. King’s delivery of the speech on August 28, 1963, from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial during the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, was a defining moment of the American Civil Rights Movement.
Delivered to over 250,000 Civil Rights supporters, the speech is often considered to be one of the greatest and most notable speeches of the 20th Century. Yet today we have a slumbering society, destined to repeat the past, and to embrace 200 years of racist behavior and oppression. Have we learned nothing as a Society?
How did it come to this?
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