What an honor we’ve had recently, to celebrate the life and legacy of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. His undeniable love for mankind, his unfailing belief of nonviolently communicating to gain in the Cause, and his unwillingness to remain quiet and complacent in the midst of injustice, will forever be honored and revered in the history of the world. However, it was Dr. King’s leadership and willingness to lay down his life for all American citizens’ rights to equality and justice which we’ll forever cherish in our hearts.
In showing our appreciation, admiration and adoration for our beloved brother, Dr. King, we celebrate him, as a nation, by naming him worthy of our (Americans) annual recognition for his role in transforming history. The African American community celebrates him even on a deeper level because of his courage to stand and be the leader and stating through every protest, March, speech, sermon, public appearance that Black Lives Matter in every aspect of American life and culture. And in doing so, Dr. King brought awareness to our Cause and he followed through to lead our people to gain success and victories along the way which has benefitted us all in a magnificent way.
Now that the annual celebration is over and all of the pomp and circumstance of the parades, parties, banquets, etc. have been quieted, packed up and put away until this time next year, how should we spend the rest of 2016?
Should we fade back into the background of American society by pretending there is no Cause today to continue fighting for? Should we assist the system of white supremacy racism in America by reducing Dr. King’s legacy and vision for America to just a dream to be discussed once a year? Should we forget the love and suffering of all of our brothers and sisters who stood with Dr. King and believed their sacrifices would yield fruit for future generations?
Certainly, if we settled with these actions, we would bring unforgivable shame to the victories gained through the sacrifices, sufferings and bloodshed of the ones we’ve recently honored.
Keep in mind we should not simply focus on national elections either. Looking at the strife that is happening in DFW cities such as Irving where the mayor is up for re-election it is critical we get involved. When we see school districts that are majority minority, yet there are NO minorities on the school board – we need to get involved at ALL levels.
Therefore, 2016 should be the year in which we stand, just as Dr. King and others did, with courage, and state Black Lives Matter. We should stand in protest and March to bring awareness to our cause of ending children living in poverty in our own backyard; transforming DISD (and all the others) from housed institutions for substandard public education, to exceptional learning institutions focused and dedicated to educating our children; protecting our right to democracy, ending racism, sexism and hate.
We should carry on Dr. King’s vision of justice and equality until it reaches every man, woman and child blanketed by the bloodstained fabric to which we pledge our allegiance.
These are critical issues that must be addressed within our communities today. These issues are our Cause today, and we must do our part. We must stand in the midst of the social change we face, and its challenges standing facing us today, and begin to write our history, today.
Again, we have gained many victories for the good of our Cause of justice and equality for all. One of the greatest is our right to utilize our voice through our vote. Dr. King stood in courage and stated that we should have a say in our lives because our lives, our children’s lives and our future generations’ lives matter.
“Give us the ballot and we will no longer plead – we will write the proper laws on the books. Give us the ballot and we will fill the legislatures with men of goodwill. Give us the ballot and we will transform the misdeeds of bloodthirsty mobs into the good deeds of orderly citizens.” – Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
We must recognize Dr. King led our people into a fight which will, seemingly, never end. We know this through his words, in which he so eloquently challenge us, as a people, in our everyday lives, and are meant to remind us that we have work to do, even after the pomp and circumstance have ended.
The fight for justice and equality should never be put away. We should never end our celebration of utilizing our voice. There should always be a parade of our people on every Election Day, marching in the courage and pride of those who came before us, fighting with our ballot, because we know, we matter.
Keep in mind that voter registration for the presidential primaries closes Feb. 16. REGISTER TO VOTE!