Today the country celebrates the life of Martin Luther King, Jr. I’d like to believe it is not just because he deserved every accolade he was given, but, because he stood up and refused to let hate win. It takes real courage to have your children stalked, your wife threatened, your home firebombed and still get up the next day, fighting for the same ideals that made others hate you and anyone who looked like you.
I remember when I was in elementary school and my daddy was talking about President John F. Kennedy and how people in the community loved him because he was a fair person. Prior to Kennedy, there were few Blacks ever invited into the White House and even fewer who worked there or covered the White House.
When he was assassinated I was in the fifth grade and remember how all the adults around us were sobbing. It was a very scary time. I mean, people didn’t go around shooting the President! Then, Kennedys’ baby brother was murdered and life as we knew it changed and we were always wondering when, not if, they would kill Martin. You see if they killed a White man, we knew that the killing of a Black man would be of little significance for many.
It is hard to imagine how Martin Luther King not only lived and worked and advocated for the rights of poor people of all colors as he saw good and honorable men mercilessly gunned down in front of their families. Such a great strength he possessed to open his door, day after day, and step outside, knowing that evitably, someone, somewhere would take his life. And, possibly the lives of his wife and children.
There is a verse that in the Bible that says, “greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for his brother”. (John 15:13) Imagine the concern and empathy you would have to give up your life for those who hate you and for people you don’t even know. Martin Luther King Jr had that kind of love. A true role model for such a time as this.
Boomer wisdom wants you all to know that the change we want to see in the world, can start with each one of us. For every good thing that you would see, mirror it in your life. Want to see more kindness, be kind. Desire compassion, be compassionate. Should you mourn the abundance of selfishness, serve others. Decry the hatred that abounds? Love everybody.
Boomer girl would sure like to live in a world like that. I believe you would too.
Blessings to you all!