Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Mathew Ahmann in a crowd of demonstrators at the March on Washington
Life

Honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

This year, and more accurately over the course of the last year, I’ve toned down my energy in activism. The passion to make change is still burning wildly in my heart, but I’ve rerouted the way I make moves to inform and take action.

I didn’t use my social media to post an MLK quote as tempting as it was. To be honest, it’s so easy to do some performative act such as that and then forget to do the actual work of doing research to better inform myself.

So I spent some quiet time to honor the Reverend and Dr. King along with his devoted wife, Coretta.

The “I Have a Dream” speech is often the first piece of writing most people refer to, which is always good to revisit or even read in full for the first time. Side comment, I’m really glad that recordings exist of important events in American history like this one.

This time I read Letter from Birmingham Jail.

And as a result of my obsessive rabbit hole-style Google-searching, I also found out about the Selma movie directed by Ava DuVernay. I didn’t watch it yet, but plan to soon. A 99% rating on Rotten Tomatoes is great to see.

I really tried to spend as much of the day just reflecting on what I’ve read and new things I keep learning about the man himself. The old NBC phrase “The More You Know,” just goes without saying.

As a parent, I also feel it necessary to be informed as best as I can so that I’m able to supplement the information my child has learned in school about Martin Luther King Jr. A lot of things regarding MLK didn’t come to me until I took college courses that delved into Black History in America. I only hope that there is more time dedicated to knowing about Mr. King in my kid’s years in school.

As for my quiet activism, I continue to donate to organizations I trust to do the work that Mr. King originally sought and worked so hard for. It doesn’t feel like much in the big picture, but I know every little bit helps steer things in a better direction.

If you have any suggestions on organizations or community programs that are especially helpful in promoting change that Dr. King would’ve been proud to see, please let me know in the comments.

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