Tuesday, January 18, 2011


Yesterday was Martin Luther King's birthday, and I saw many references here and there to the famous "I Have A Dream" speech. It made me think about dreaming, and what how dreams hold such power for inspiration and for motivation.

I wonder if Dr. King ever really had a dream, during his sleep, about a world where former slaves and former slave owners sat down at the same table, where black and white children were holding hands in Alabama? If he had that dream, did he wake up smiling and groggy, and then tell Coretta about it? Did he mention it to others at the breakfast table? Did the images from his dream keep tugging at his conscious mind as he sat down to write the speech?

This eloquent speech is so beautiful to read. Look at this part:
But there is something that I must say to my people who stand on the warm threshold which leads into the palace of justice. In the process of gaining our rightful place we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred.
We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. We must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence.
 This advice was directed toward those struggling against racial injustice in the 60s. However, don't you wish someone today was warning people to keep their protest from turning violent? We could use some of that rhetoric as tempers flair on both sides of the political spectrum, after the shootings in Arizona.

I can dream.

1 comment:

Barbara Tannenbaum said...

What a beautiful dream. I wish there was someone whose public eloquence was matched with a sense of insistence and scorching honesty. Someone outside the political kubuki where people won't say certain things so as not to seem "angry" could express our anger and then take us to a higher place.