"Change does not roll in on wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle."
Martin Luther King Jr.
These words strike deep and make me think every time that I read them. How can they be applied to the current social landscape of the United States, and even the world.
Although today is a far cry from the days of lynchings, sit-ins, marches and protests we still have the air of complacency hanging over our heads as deathly as a makeshift gallows that have stolen so many of our brethren. It is easy to be content with our current situation, our schools are integrated, our social fabric is such that all colors and creeds work side by side.
"Today they say that we are free, only to be chained in poverty..." Robert Nesta Marley
This is not enough. There are still struggles there is still fights to be fought. There are still battles to be waged. There are gender roles that need to be equalized, sexual orientation that needs to be equalized, there is poverty that needs to be eliminated and there is compassion that needs to be spread. These are battles that need to be fought.
Martin Luther King Jr. Said once "A man that won't die for something is not fit to live."
These times are the times that his words still ring true. Change does not come easy but comes after much struggle and hardship. More so than ever we need these words to be a guiding beacon for a better future.
With so many people voting for Obama we voted for change and a symbolic change has happened. A new leader arrived and yet people all across America are still destitute and hopeless in the outlook of this new decade that is upon us. They cry, wail and look for anyone to blame. Is this the way?
If Martin Luther King Jr. could see today what would be his response to our current political/social landscape?
Would he cozy up on a the couch, grab a beer and watch television knowing that his children and grandchildren can now go school with all the other kids? Would he sit back and complain that Obama is not doing enough? Would he sit on a rocking chair and tell the neighborhood children about his struggles and champion moments.
The answer is NO.
Martin Luther King jr. would not stop now and would not stop ever. There is never a a time where we must give up. We now have a nation in crisis, a world in need. The struggles in Haiti, Darfur, Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Tibet, and the list goes on. Most of all the struggle where YOU live. It could be anywhere in the world, and wherever you are there are poor. There are hungry, there is economic crisis, there is social injustice.
Solomon Burke said it best, "if one us are chained then none of us are free."
So instead of simply saying thank you for the good that Martin Luther King jr. has done get up today and everyday from this moment on and be a champion for human rights, for all rights. You can lend your hand or support to causes and struggles all over the world. Instead of being complacent, or instead of waiting on the President lets take our own future into our own hands. We each have that power to make a better tomorrow. Plant a seed of hope into the earth that yields hope and progress in return.
In memory of Martin Luther King Jr. January 15th 1929-April 4th 1968
"Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. And so we must straighten our backs and work for our freedom. A man can't ride your back unless your back is bent."