MLK: the betrayal of silence; videos of speeches.

Via on Jan 18, 2009

The action and speech of Dr. Martin Luther King demonstrates the power of one man to influence a nation. What would have happened if he had remained silent. And who now among us is the next MLK, the next Gandhi, the next Mother Teresa. We will never know when our voices remain silent.

“Now, I’ve chosen to preach about the war in Vietnam because I agree with Dante, that the hottest places in hell are reserved for those who in a period of moral crisis maintain their neutrality. There comes a time when silence becomes betrayal.

The truth of these words is beyond doubt, but the mission to which they call us is a most difficult one. Even when pressed by the demands of inner truth, men do not easily assume the task of opposing their government’s policy, especially in time of war. Nor does the human spirit move without great difficulty against all the apathy of conformist thought within one’s own bosom and in the surrounding world. Moreover, when the issues at hand seem as perplexing, as they often do in the case of this dreadful conflict, we’re always on the verge of being mesmerized by uncertainty. But we must move on. Some of us who have already begun to break the silence of the night have found that the calling to speak is often a vocation of agony. But we must speak. We must speak with all the humility that is appropriate to our limited vision, but we must speak.” Read on…

Does the war for our souls now turn against us? Against the destruction caused by our own inaction and ignorance. Silence may be our greatest enemy, silence and fear. I pray we may hear the words of Dr. King with our hearts. That he may not be an absent voice of the past but a constant voice of conscience to lead us to embody a potential beyond imagination. As a nation we have taken steps closer to the promised land of MLK’s vision. Can we now dream of a world united against war, starvation, and the unchecked devastation of our most steadfast companion, the earth?

Video: Dr. King’s last speech.

Video: I Have a Dream

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5 Responses to “MLK: the betrayal of silence; videos of speeches.”

  1. Tim C. says:

    I am not sure that Dr, King would be proud of the course that President Obama has proceeded upon. I listened to this speech, by Obama at Ebenezer, not too long ago. What stood out to me was that Obama seems to use this platform to promote the idea that Dr. King wouldn't oppose the wars, implying that Dr. King would unquestioningly support his adminstration. He makes an amazingly inaccurate statement that implies that Dr. King some how fought for blacks to be intergrated into the U.S. military specifically, because it was right. I have only read of Dr. King denouncing the military, exposing it as an exploiter of the poor, mass murdering machine, "demonic suction tube". I never heard of Dr. King foretelling of future generations gathering to blindly support war, or passively opposing it in civil silence, because it was overseen by a black president. But I have heard of him foretelling of the need for clergy and lay believers, of any religion, to be prepared to organize and continue to oppose any war in any part of the world against any people. Sadly, silence has become the norm. To insinutate that Dr. King would not support Obama's self professed agenda in Afghanistan, that Dr. King would speak out against any president pursuing a war policy, especially under such dire economics perils has become a blasphemy. Mesmerized by the allure of potential prestige the clergy that profess to carry the legacy of Dr, King remain silent where he would not. Endorse when he would oppose. Follow when he would organize and perform acts of civil disobedience. But I guess clergy know better now,they probably are more matured now and realized the time to remain silent is correct and appropriate. I disagree, but then again I am not a clergy. I am just an ordinary person. No prestige, power, money, following, formal education, heck I am not even a Christian. I just want peace and social justice.

  2. Randy Salars says:

    'At the center of non-violence stands the principle of love'

  3. [...] year, in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, the Washington Post produced this video entreating the general public to answer the question [...]

  4. [...] entire life fighting without arms for what he knew was the future of the world in which he lived—for what was right. Even after multiple threats on his life, on the lives of his family, and after his home was [...]

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