of Martin Luther King, Jr.
"It may well be, that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition is not the glaring noisiness of the so-called bad people, but the appalling silence of the so-called good people."
"What is needed is a realization that power without love is reckless and abusive, and love without power is sentimental and anemic. Power at its best is love implementing the demands of justice, and justice at its best is power correcting everything that stands against love."
"True altruism is more than the capacity to pity; it is the capacity to sympathize. Pity may represent little more than the impersonal concern which prompts the mailing of a check, but true sympathy is the personal concern which demands the giving of one's soul."
"If we assume that life is worth living, if we assume that mankind has a right to survive, then we must find an alternative to war."
"If any of you are around when I have to meet my day, I don't want a long funeral. And if you get somebody to deliver the eulogy, tell them not to talk too long. Every now and then I wonder what I want them to say. Tell them not to mention that I have a Nobel Peace Prize, that isn't important. Tell them not to mention that I have three or four hundred other awards, that's not important. Tell them not to mention where I went to school. I'd like somebody to mention that day, that Martin Luther King, Jr., tried to give his life serving others. I'd like for somebody to say that day, that martin Luther King, Jr., tried to love somebody. I want you to say that day, that I tried to be right on the war question. I want you to be able to say that day, that I did try to feed the hungry. And I want you to be able to say that day, that I did try, in my life, to clothe those who were naked. I want you to say, on that day, that I did try, in my life, to visit those who were in prison. I want you to say that I tried to love and serve humanity."
Thank you Dr. King for your commitment to humanity, your courage in the face of trials, and for showing us what Jesus meant by turning the other cheek, loving our enemies, and taking care of the poor, widowed, and orphaned. You taught us love and patiently began the reversal of injustice and hate that were long overdue in this country. For that and much more, we honor you today.
(And let's be honest, thanks for the day off of work and school too...)
*all quotes and excerpts taken from: The Words and Inspiration of Martin Luther King, Jr. DREAM. Blue Mountain Arts, Boulder, CO, 2007.