Today is Martin Luther King Day in the United States. It is a day to honor the work and the memory of a great American. His legacy – always fighting for change peacefully – is as relevant today as it was when he lived.
There was an article I read the other day that asked, “what would Dr. King think if he were alive today?” Would he be discouraged by the tone of the debate? Would he be dismayed by the violence in our society?
As I reflect on this day, I can’t help but think he would retain the hope and the optimism that he lived for. And he died for.
I am reminded of two of President Obama’s speeches.
Last week in Tucson, he said “we may not be able to stop all evil in the world, but I know that how we treat one another, that’s entirely up to us.”
And in Philadelphia during the campaign in his famous speech on race in America he explained: “This union may never be perfect, but generation after generation has shown that it can always be perfected. And today, whenever I find myself feeling doubtful or cynical about this possibility, what gives me the most hope is the next generation — the young people whose attitudes and beliefs and openness to change have already made history in this election.”
I believe that if Dr. King were alive today he would be as hopeful as our President. As hopeful as I am. As hopeful as most Americans.