When I think of MLK, so many images come to mind. On Saturday morning, I thought about the indellible mark that he left on not only this country, but the world. I shook my head sadly as I thought of the younger brother of a friend who spits on his memory because of MLK’s personal shortcomings. We all have unfortunate pasts and poor choices but that does not preclude us from greatness.
Images that come to mind are varied and numerous. I think of my mother at 16 on my grandfather’s shoulders alongside my great aunt at the “I Have a Dream” speech in ’63. I remember the snow and ice when I march with my mother to lobby for a day to celebrate his great life. My neighbor’s son doing his signature move as we danced to Stevie’s Happy Birthday. I think of so many B&W pictures of him as a young preacher with a powerful voice, leading a movement and so many hearts.
I wonder if he knew the impact he was making as a young man. If he knew what his legacy would bring? In some ways, I think he did as is evidenced in Letter From Birmingham Jail. Nobody forsees their death as a result of their work without understanding it’s weight and worth…yet he did it anyway. How many of us would do it anyway? Surely not the young dude I smh about on Saturday.
While people are rushing to volunteer/serve on this date, I am hopeful there are far more who live his message everyday.
My children and I will be present on August 28th for the unveiling of his memorial on the mall.
“We hold these truths to be self-evident that all man are created equal.”
PS Yes, you can love Martin AND Malcom (pre and post hajj).