Time to Stop Celebrating 'I Have a Dream'

Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in Washington, D.C. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images News)
Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in Washington, D.C. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images News)

Writing at the Huffington Post, Catherine Meeks makes the case that we'd be much better off focusing on Martin Luther King Jr.'s Letter From a Birmingham Jail.

… I think that we should place a moratorium on the Dream speech. I do not want to celebrate it and will not until I see the ideas and spirit of the letter being more fully lived in this nation. Of course it was a wonderful day in Washington that day with all of those thousands of people gathered and that young black preacher standing there delivering his powerful message of hope. But as a nation we took that speech and that day as a part of the King that we could stand to promote and it is not helping us get to the Beloved Community. We have not taken the radical message from the letter and other works of Martin Luther King into our hearts and minds as he was dreaming for us to do on that day in August of 1963.

Until we put forth a greater effort to truly internalize the real Martin Luther King Jr. and his message, we need to be careful about organizing any type of celebrations, especially ones that celebrates a dream that is yet to be realized. The reality of the daily life of millions of our sisters and brothers bears witness to the fact that the dream is a long way from being realized. The fact that we continue to host the wars that kill our sisters and brothers in other parts of the world, the daily killing of our own children largely because of the poverty and spiritual deprivation in our blighted neighborhoods that we work so hard to forget and the constant assault upon the most vulnerable among us, offer a deafening reminder of how far from the dream we are. 


Read Catherine Meeks' entire piece at the Huffington Post.

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