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What Would King Do?

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Most of us are familiar with the acronym (WWJD) that stands for “What Would Jesus Do?” We have now asked a similar question many times since the death of Martin Luther King Jr. What would Martin Luther King Jr. say or do if he were alive today?

I’m sure King would begin his observations by saying that some of us have made great advancement in America since the days of the Montgomery bus boycott. We can now ride the busses without harassment; however we do not own a bus line.

We can sit at the lunch counters yet we do not own a major restaurant or food chain. We can sleep in the finest hotels yet we own not one hotel chain. We have integrated the board rooms of many corporations yet we do not own one of the Fortune 500 corporations. We have been elected to lead some of the largest cities in America yet left out of the economic mix when it comes to doing business with the city.

We have integrated the class rooms yet lag behind in graduating and going on to schools of higher education. We have gotten the right to vote yet are disenfranchised at the polling booths.

The Nobel Peace prize winner would say we have become the mightiest nation on the face of the earth yet go to war to resolve our disputes. King would say to Powell, Thomas, Rice, Paige and others, You don’t need to know the second theory of thermodynamics in physics to serve, you only need a heart full of grace and soul generated by love.

You have been appointed to serve in some of the highest positions in government yet you do not serve our nation but only the one who appointed you. King would remind all of us that while serving we must serve for a higher moral purpose than those who appoint us if we are to make a difference in this world.

He would say to the elected and appointed official you have taken an oath to uphold and defend the constitution of the United States. You were sworn to protect the rights of the least of us not just those who contribute to your campaign war chest.

He would remind us all that “inferior education, poor housing, unemployment, inadequate health care- each is a bitter component of the oppression that has been our heritage.”

He would remind the administration that, “In our society it is murder, psychologically to deprive a man of a job and an income. You are in substance saying to that man that he has no right to exist.” He would say that as jobs are being sent over seas as the unemployment of Black Americans sour into double digits.

To the brothers and sisters who celebrate his birthday he would say, “a man who won’t die for something is not fit to live.” This would be a rallying cry for Black men to get involved in the economical and political process in you community.

King would say many other things but he would say in closing his brief remarks, “Let us march on poverty until no starved man walks the streets of our cities and towns in search of jobs that do not exist. Millions of people have been cheated for centuries, restitution is a costly process, but one we must resolve in America.” And to the brothers he would remind us that “Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor, it must be demanded by the oppressed.”

We must do more than recite his speeches or read his works; we must put them into practice in order to awake from the Dream. We salute you Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

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