Monday, January 20, 2014

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

One of the fondest memories I from my family's sojourn in Sacramento, California is the recollection of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, 2009. At my younger children's elementary school, they had had held a mock election days before--and the votes from the multi-cultural classrooms reflected the outcome of the actual election. My son, at age 7, was under the impression that he, personally, had elected Barack Obama to the presidency. When I discovered there was Martin Luther King Jr. march, I decided we HAD to attend. We pulled up to the college and stepped out into the crowd. Participating in the march were families, Scout groups, marching bands. We walked past older homes festooned with banners and flags, and friendly hands waved us along from balconies. My son made it the whole 2 1/2 miles downtown, whereupon we scrambled (along with everyone else) to find a shuttle bus--a bit of a chaotic process, but somehow, that day, democracy was working. It felt like we were all grabbing onto MLK's ideals together, and everyone was along for the ride.There was a glow of joy about the day.

With respect, I'm thinking of some of MLK's words today:

“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’”

“Never succumb to the temptation of bitterness.”

“Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle.”

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