It’s Sunday, January 17, and I’ve been thinking a lot about Martin Luther King Jr. tonight. Polished clergyman and a principal leader of the civil rights movement in the U.S., he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964, and the following year led a campaign to register black voters. Congress also passed the Voting Rights Act that same year.
At the time it seemed America was fast becoming a land of equality, civility, respect and cooperation. Though times are different now, and we have made a great deal of progress, it must be noted that some 45 years later we still have much to learn from Dr. King. On this eve of Martin Luther King Day, I’ve selected five of his quotes to reflect upon. What are your thoughts about these passages?
“All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence.”
“All progress is precarious, and the solution of one problem brings us face to face with another problem.”
“Every man must decide whether he will walk in the light of creative altruism or in the darkness of destructive selfishness.”
“Human progress is neither automatic nor inevitable… Every step toward the goal of justice requires sacrifice, suffering, and struggle; the tireless exertions and passionate concern of dedicated individuals.”
“Philanthropy is commendable, but it must not cause the philanthropist to overlook the circumstances of economic injustice which make philanthropy necessary.”
Like Dr. Martin Luther King did many years ago, we must open our hearts and minds to embrace the commonality that we share as humans on this precarious planet. If not, we will never solve the serious problems that affect our global society.