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 Post subject: Thank you, Martin
PostPosted: Mon Jan 15, 2007 4:40 pm 
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Thank you, Martin, for having the vision to know that it was time for "all of God's children" to walk hand in hand.

Thank you, Martin, for having the wisdom to know that peace and not violence is the way forward.

Thank you, Martin, for having the oratorial brilliance to inspire a nation.

Thank you, Martin, for having the courage to do the right thing, even though it cost you your life.

Thank you, Martin, for the sacrifices that you made.

You will not be forgotten, and though there is still a long way to go, your Dream will never die.

Thank you, Martin.

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 15, 2007 5:16 pm 
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:)

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 15, 2007 5:17 pm 
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Thanks Doug, I didn't realise it was so appreciated!

Wait a minute, what do you mean, "cost you your life"...


Oh, you mean the other Martin.


Right.



He was cool too.

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 15, 2007 5:22 pm 
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The world needs more people like him, and like Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu, and many others who are perhaps less globally known.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 15, 2007 5:40 pm 
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Al, you ARE appreciated. :hug:

Did I ever tell you that my dad's name is Martin, too?


Griffy, you are so right!

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 15, 2007 7:30 pm 
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I was thinking about him the other day, on vacation in Hawaii.

I saw a man with his little daughter on the beach. They swam and ran around, and then he picked her up and carried her back to the hotel. It's always adorable to see a big guy play with a tiny kid, and this particular guy had an impressive set of rounded muscles rolling under coffee-colored skin. OK, so I was staring. Maybe. :whistle:

The point. My sharp-eyed son noticed me watching so I covered up by saying, "Oh, look, isn't that little girl cute?"

His reply - "Which one, the one in the yellow bathing suit?"

And it struck me then that the dream was alive and real. In my son's natural, uncensored way of thinking, the girl's skin color was irrelevant, it didn't say anything about her or place her into any pigeonhole.

I've posted a link to this cartoon in another thread, but I think it deserves to be reposted.

The Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial

There may still be a long way to go, but we truly have come a long way.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 16, 2007 12:46 am 
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I actually did think he was referring to you Alatar :oops: Either way both Martins are pretty dang cool :).

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jan 16, 2007 3:07 pm 
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It seems easier to sanctify the man than to deal with the fact that the government of the United States killed him. Non violence as a political tool has never recovered worldwide from that act.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 16, 2007 3:37 pm 
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I have my own thoughts on that question, Tosh, but I would prefer that this thread remain a celebration of a great man's life, tragically cut short, and that any discussion about who really killed him, and why, take place in a separate thread in the Lasto Beth Lammon forum.

Thanks.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jan 16, 2007 3:50 pm 
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All right. Sorry V.
He showed that a moral stance can change a nation and the world. I grew up with the Civil Rights movement and it shaped my thoughts and personality.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jan 16, 2007 3:53 pm 
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Thanks. And no need to apologize. I understand completely.

Quote:
I grew up with the Civil Rights movement and it shaped my thoughts and personality.


That is very apparent (and I mean that as the best possible compliment).

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jan 16, 2007 4:50 pm 
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I grew up after that time, in a place that I have come to understand (painfully, I might add) that, by some people, will never been seen as anything but oppressive, nor any of its people seen as anything but judgemental and hostile to minorities and their struggles.

However unlikely those people may judge it to be, Martin Luther King's message sings to me.

That has to be a testament to the man, and his message. He talked of equality and dreams, dreams of people being judged for the content of their character, rather than the color of their skin. He seems to talk to me, although I know the immediate inequality he was addressing did not apply to me.

I believe, though, that he was talking about equality for everyone, even me, and inspired me to try to recognize inequality where it existed. Sometimes that is difficult if you are not the object of the discrimination. Sometimes it is difficult if the discrimination is not overt.

However, the dream holds for all of us, and I physically feel warm and goosebumpy when I read his speech, made so long ago. He really was speaking to everyone, and I still hear him.

The color of my skin has never handicapped me in my social environment (except that kewl kids were tan when I was growing up, and the only way I will ever be tan is to paint it on), and so I will never know that feeling that he and others felt every day... to be judged so thoroughly on something that is so superficial, really.

And yet his writings have captivated me. His hopes inspire me, yet.


I didn't know, when I was growing up, how skeptical people would be of my honest feelings, later in life, when they learned where I was raised. I never would have believed that I could tell someone that I felt one way, and they would insist that I felt another, based on something that they had read. I would never have believed that the inspiration that I feel when I read Dr. King's words would be dismissed as "white guilt"; invalidating my choices made by my character as insignificant, based on the color of my skin.

In a strange and ironic twist, the very act of my own feelings being assumed because of where I grew up-- being judged by the very people who would say they disliked judging-- makes me even more sympathetic to Dr. King's struggle. I can feel the bewilderment when people are looking at me but they are not seeing ME.


Rest in peace, Dr. King. Your life, and the choices you made, have affected many more people in a profound way than you would ever have believed.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jan 16, 2007 6:23 pm 
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What a wonderful post, my dear Anthy (though of course I already knew how you felt about Dr. King). What you say about being judged by the very people who would say they disliked judging really speaks to me, because I too have had that experience, but in a different context.

One may wonder why I placed this thread in this forum. It is easy to forget that Dr. King was a minister. But I think when considering his legacy, that needs to be taken into consideration. He very profoundly believed that he was doing God's work, and that inspiration colored everything that he did, from his civil rights work to his (quite controversial at the time) coming out against the war in Vietnam. He truly believed that all people were God's children and while of course he felt a special responsibility to free the African-American people from which he came from from the chains of centuries of slavery and discrimination, that was merely the most obvious example of what he stood for.

I have a dream that one day, a fair-skinned redheaded girl from the deep south will be free to express her love and respect for someone like Martin Luther King without being judged unfairly. And I am quite sure that somewhere, Dr. King shares that dream.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jan 17, 2007 2:53 am 
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Quote:
He truly believed that all people were God's children and while of course he felt a special responsibility to free the African-American people from which he came from from the chains of centuries of slavery and discrimination, that was merely the most obvious example of what he stood for.



:love:


Quote:
I have a dream that one day, a fair-skinned redheaded girl from the deep south will be free to express her love and respect for someone like Martin Luther King without being judged unfairly. And I am quite sure that somewhere, Dr. King shares that dream.


:love:

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"A cage," Éowyn said. "To stay behind bars, until use and old age accept them, and all chance of doing great deeds is gone beyond recall or desire.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jan 17, 2007 4:12 pm 
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I just saw this article posting in another board and wondered at it's accuracy:

http://www.fair.org/index.php?page=2269

Quote:
The Martin Luther King You Don't See on TV


Media Beat (1/4/95)

By Jeff Cohen and Norman Solomon

It's become a TV ritual: Every year in mid-January, around the time of Martin Luther King's birthday, we get perfunctory network news reports about "the slain civil rights leader."

The remarkable thing about this annual review of King's life is that several years — his last years — are totally missing, as if flushed down a memory hole.

What TV viewers see is a closed loop of familiar file footage: King battling desegregation in Birmingham (1963); reciting his dream of racial harmony at the rally in Washington (1963); marching for voting rights in Selma, Alabama (1965); and finally, lying dead on the motel balcony in Memphis (1968).

An alert viewer might notice that the chronology jumps from 1965 to 1968. Yet King didn't take a sabbatical near the end of his life. In fact, he was speaking and organizing as diligently as ever.

Almost all of those speeches were filmed or taped. But they're not shown today on TV.

Why?

It's because national news media have never come to terms with what Martin Luther King Jr. stood for during his final years.

In the early 1960s, when King focused his challenge on legalized racial discrimination in the South, most major media were his allies. Network TV and national publications graphically showed the police dogs and bullwhips and cattle prods used against Southern blacks who sought the right to vote or to eat at a public lunch counter.

But after passage of civil rights acts in 1964 and 1965, King began challenging the nation's fundamental priorities. He maintained that civil rights laws were empty without "human rights" — including economic rights. For people too poor to eat at a restaurant or afford a decent home, King said, anti-discrimination laws were hollow.

Noting that a majority of Americans below the poverty line were white, King developed a class perspective. He decried the huge income gaps between rich and poor, and called for "radical changes in the structure of our society" to redistribute wealth and power.

"True compassion," King declared, "is more than flinging a coin to a beggar; it comes to see that an edifice which produces beggars needs restructuring."

By 1967, King had also become the country's most prominent opponent of the Vietnam War, and a staunch critic of overall U.S. foreign policy, which he deemed militaristic. In his "Beyond Vietnam" speech delivered at New York's Riverside Church on April 4, 1967 — a year to the day before he was murdered — King called the United States "the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today."

From Vietnam to South Africa to Latin America, King said, the U.S. was "on the wrong side of a world revolution." King questioned "our alliance with the landed gentry of Latin America," and asked why the U.S. was suppressing revolutions "of the shirtless and barefoot people" in the Third World, instead of supporting them.

In foreign policy, King also offered an economic critique, complaining about "capitalists of the West investing huge sums of money in Asia, Africa and South America, only to take the profits out with no concern for the social betterment of the countries."

You haven't heard the "Beyond Vietnam" speech on network news retrospectives, but national media heard it loud and clear back in 1967 — and loudly denounced it. Time magazine called it "demagogic slander that sounded like a script for Radio Hanoi." The Washington Post patronized that "King has diminished his usefulness to his cause, his country, his people."

In his last months, King was organizing the most militant project of his life: the Poor People's Campaign. He crisscrossed the country to assemble "a multiracial army of the poor" that would descend on Washington — engaging in nonviolent civil disobedience at the Capitol, if need be — until Congress enacted a poor people's bill of rights. Reader's Digest warned of an "insurrection."

King's economic bill of rights called for massive government jobs programs to rebuild America's cities. He saw a crying need to confront a Congress that had demonstrated its "hostility to the poor" — appropriating "military funds with alacrity and generosity," but providing "poverty funds with miserliness."

How familiar that sounds today, more than a quarter-century after King's efforts on behalf of the poor people's mobilization were cut short by an assassin's bullet.

As 1995 gets underway, in this nation of immense wealth, the White House and Congress continue to accept the perpetuation of poverty. And so do most mass media. Perhaps it's no surprise that they tell us little about the last years of Martin Luther King's life.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jan 17, 2007 5:53 pm 
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No comment.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jan 17, 2007 6:21 pm 
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Yov, I think that article raises questions that are worth discussing, but I would rather not do so in this thread. I'm not going to move it, but perhaps you could start a separate thread in the Lasto forum?

Or perhaps I will.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jan 17, 2007 6:27 pm 
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I realized after posting it thatt it was probably more debate-y then I'd intended. I mianly posted it here because, if accurate, it paints a picture of a man who was not primarily concerned with the black race, as is usually thought, but with the human race. An admirable man, indeed.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 19, 2007 6:44 pm 
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My tea bag this morning had a quote that made me think of Martin Luther King, Jr.
The free thinking of one age is the common sense of the next. - Matthew Arnold
Although the saying is true for "one age," Dr. King showed that visionaries can make the same true for "one generation."

It is clear to me that Dr. King's dream is far from being realized. Even if little children can look at their fellows without seeing race (and having had a white friend's kid in VA recently point at me and ask her parents why I had "funny skin," I'm inclined to believe that even this is far from true), this world still teaches us to see race well before adulthood. It is a lesson that once taught is practically impossible to unlearn. As a nation, we evaluate others according to the color of their skin and the content of their character; sometimes it seems that the only progress we have made is that all different colors of people are doing the evaluating, as Anthy's story illustrates.

Other times, though, it seems clear that Dr. King's free thinking has led us to accept the common sense conclusion that skin color, and other ethnically-based characteristics, should be irrelevant to how we perceive and treat each other. At least, we accept this idea in theory - we recognize that it is the way things should be, though not the way things are. I feel that our acceptance of this idea is the first step towards realization of Dr. King's dream, and by extension, an integral part of the American Dream.

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I won't just survive
Oh, you will see me thrive
Can't write my story
I'm beyond the archetype
I won't just conform
No matter how you shake my core
'Cause my roots, they run deep, oh

When, when the fire's at my feet again
And the vultures all start circling
They're whispering, "You're out of time,"
But still I rise
This is no mistake, no accident
When you think the final nail is in, think again
Don't be surprised, I will still rise


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 19, 2007 8:42 pm 
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yov, thanks for putting that article here. I respect that man even more, now.

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