I think most of us dream of a better world. I imagine (or at least hope) it is the vast minority of the population who actively want a to live in a world of violence, hate and rampant racism.
But we do. Still.
As Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. pointed out, “The ultimate tragedy is not the oppression and cruelty by the bad people but the silence over that by the good people.”
Our silence is the reason that we are still facing so many of the exact same issues Civil Rights activists fought and died for nearly 50 years ago. Because good people — people like myself — have done and said nothing; Because good people — who dream of a better place, who swell at the words of Dr. King and his vision of a world where self-evident truths stand un-refuted — have not taken action to make that dream a reality.
The fact that an entire sector of our nation still has to plead on a daily basis that their lives matter means that dreaming in niceties does not work.
Edmund Burke famously said, “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.”
Being good is simply not enough. We must stop being silent — the fight is still happening. Here. Everyday.
MLK day is not just a day to speak of dreams and love — even though those are very good things. Or just a day to remember sacrifices — even though that is important. It is a day to look at where we are and be honest — a day to reflect on how we (I/you/us) can make a change toward good (or at least better). IMHO.