Honoring the Legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr.: Standing Up for Racial Justice
When we stand up for racial justice, we are standing up for human rights. We are standing up for immigrant rights. We are standing up against xenophobia. We are standing up to build a movement committed to economic and social justice for all.
This year more than ever, as we honor the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr., we need to make or renew a deep commitment to justice--a justice denied to so many on the basis of race, class, nationality, immigration status, gender, sexual orientation, religion.
While Martin Luther King, Jr., has mainly been recognized for his contribution to the fight for racial justice in this country, his values and commitment were more encompassing and he had stepped up in the struggles for workers' rights, had stood up against the Vietnam War, and had advanced a vision of world peace.
All of these values and more are threatened by the incoming Trump Administration. It is only fitting that this year, we call on all of our members, friends and allies to join us in standing up for rights and justice--today, and in the critical weeks and months ahead.
So often, we have turned to the memorable quotes of Martin Luther King, Jr., as a source of inspiration, guidance, values. This may be a timely moment to reflect on some of those messages--the beginning of a week which will usher in a new president whose arrogant, racist and xenophobic messages and proposals should stir our renewed commitment to human rights and justice.
Click here for some amazing photos and lesser-known and often more progressive messages from Martin Luther King, Jr.--messages that were not etched in stone at his memorial in Washington, DC. All of us, including the immigrant rights movement, should be reminded of the intense periods of struggle, often violent and confrontational, that were the context for those messages that sought to give direction in real time.
"A true revolution of values will soon look uneasily at the glaring contrast between poverty and wealth with righteous indignation. It will look across the seas and see individual capitalists of the West investing huge sums of money in Asia, Africa and South America, only to take the profits out with no concern for the social betterment of the countries and say, 'This is not just.'" -- Martin Luther King, Jr., Why I am Opposed to the War in Vietnam (1967)
"I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality. This is why right, temporarily defeated, is stronger than evil triumphant". -- Norway, 1964
Reclaiming the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr., also reclaims the political space in which we need to deliberately make the interconnections--social, economic, domestic, global--to build a durable and inclusive movement.
Let's make it a good year for justice!
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Thank you for your support
We are so encouraged by the generous contributions and membership pledges we have received since the November election and over our end-of-year donation period. Thanks to all of you--our longtime supporters and new members and friends. We welcome your continuing support!
We look forward to remaining connected and working actively and collaboratively on a common agenda for rights and justice--now more important than ever!