Today we celebrate the birth of one of the icons of our nation: Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. I shared some thoughts last year, which remain as they are, but I never imagined at that time the course that history would take between these two celebrations of his birth.
There are days that I still find myself seeing even more deeply just how depraved we have been as a nation. I’ve been studying our history this past year, and find that in the midst of a hundred other events in the course of time we have been surrounded by our constant failure to give all people the respect and opportunity they deserve. Although I would contend that we have done what should be done by government to bring dignity and equality to the masses, I know that many would be quick to disagree. It would be interesting to hear the opinions of those like Condoleezza Rice, Barack Obama, Clarence Thomas, all of whom have lived through the years of dramatic change in out society and have been in roles where they can see many of the aspects of the society’s changes in judicial, legislative and education worlds.
I consider myself, as well as the whole nation, indebted to Dr. King for his sacrifice in carrying the message of our social failure and need for transformation to the leaders and people of our country. It still makes me sad to think he died so young (he was only 39), but he had already successfully lit the fire of reform in the hearts of many people, both black and white.
It surprises me that racism is still such an unfettered evil in our society. It pains me to think that people can still look down on others for any reason. But we have frail feelings, frail hearts, frail souls… we are difficult to mend.
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Tomorrow the 44th President of the United States will be inaugurated. The first African-American to be President.
I don’t agree with Mr. Obama on some key policy areas, and that is not likely to change. But I do hope that he is successful in his role as President. For the sake of keeping our nation safe, secure, united, strong, and economically sound. For the sake of my 401k. For the sake of history.
The LAST thing we would need is to have the first African-American President be a collosal failure. It would diminish sense of success that has brought us to this moment. It would tear at the success that Dr. King’s enabled during his short time on Earth.
Despite my disagreements with the Obama, this is still a key event in the life of our nation… and indeed it would have been key with just his nomination by the Democratic Party. But for a nation that has struggled so horribly to depose slavery, waiting until decades after Great Britain had done the same, and taking another century to find its way past the mockery of separate-but-equal, this is truly a day for all of us to celebrate. But make no mistake, we enjoy this moment at a cost that may haunt us for a generation. While I wish Barack success, I can’t avoid seeing years of continued challenges us as we struggle with just how far down the path of Socialism we are prepared to go. And frankly, it’s not just because of who is President, but because of the sweeping movement of short-term thinking that is permeating our culture and our government.
Perhaps, this moment will pass and the less-than-careful promises of a dire campaign will be replaced by clear thinking… from the little I’ve heard lately from Washington between the continual partying, it sounds like some of the promises from Obama may be reconsidered, delayed, or even scrapped. Not a surprise from any politician, of course, and hopefully a sign that reality is sinking in.
All of us, whoever we are, should at least ensure that our children get a good view of these events and understand what it really means, what the past 232 years have been all about, and how far we’ve come in that time, and in the last 50 years especially. We should be proud of the positive meaning behind this moment, and roll up our sleaves to get to work making this the best country yet!