16 January 2012

Monday Musings...
Today is Martin Luther King, Jr. day, is a federally recognized holiday, and is traditionally observed on the third Monday of January (King's birthday was 15 January).
As such, this falls under the Uniform Monday Holiday Act, which preceded this observance by some fifteen years.
The day was signed into law by President Ronald Reagan in 1983, and was first observed in 1986.
The holiday was actually first promoted by LABOR UNIONS in contract negotiations.
The bill that Reagan signed was proposed by representative Katie Hall of INDIANA.
Senator Jesse Helms (R -NC) initially opposed the idea stating that it went against protocol for a national observance for a person who (he claimed) was opposed to the Vietnam war and a "Marxist".
Senator John McCain
(R-AZ) also voted against establishing the day as a holiday to honor King. McCain later reversed his position.
All this waffling caused the state of Arizona (who replaced Columbus Day with MLK day, pissing off the Italians living here) close to $500 MILLION in funding, but ti also cost them the SUPER BOWL (which was played in Pasadena that year). Gotta have SPORTS and be entertained, don't we?
You can read more about how other states dealt with the recognition of this day here:
I just gave you the nuts & bolts of the beginnings of today.
And for more on Dr. King himself, here's this WIKI:
Now, you have to acknowledge that Dr. King WAS a pivotal figure in the history of America, and comparisons to people like Gandhi are obvious.
Personally, I have always taken to heart the messages that Dr. King spoke about with such passion and conviction.
And, yes, he wasn't a "perfect" individual either, but then again, who among us truly IS?
But he had a message ...and it was for EVERYONE, and NOT just for the black community.
I think it's EXTREMELY important that we always remember that.
While he was indeed a champion for Civil Rights for blacks in America, the underlying theme was a UNIFYING one...bringing ALL people of every race into ONE society, and that's meaning NOT in a socialistic manner, but by peace, a willingness to work TOGETHER, and through God's grace.
It's here that I think the message has more meaning...the reliance upon GOD to see us ALL through (those) turbulent times, allowing HIS love to shine through. King was only a messenger here, but what a great message he delivered to us all.
Now...fast forward a few decades...
King is but a memory to many (it's another day off...yippee), and all but unknown to others who have been born long after his untimely death.
The message is still around, but who is there to remind us about it?
Well, they recently dedicated a memorial statue to Dr. King, and had to rework the words carved upon the stone, because the paraphrase did not PROPERLY convey WHO Dr. King was and what he stood for.
If you ask me, I personally think the stature doesn't do Dr. King justice AT ALL.
I would have MUCH more preferred a statue in BRONZE, and not stone, and it should have been a full figure, and not a partial figure attached to uncut stone, as the one they have is.
The face doesn't capture the emotion of Dr. King, either...hardly looks like him at all.
But hey, "you get what you pay for" these days...I just feel that more thought should have gone into such a memorial tribute.
(yeah, I'm only a middle-aged WHITE guy - what the hell would *I* ever know about anything or anyone BLACK, right?)
Well, I obviously know a LOT more about the black experience than MANY blacks do today, and that's because of a desire to understand my fellow man (as Dr. King would have preferred). I took the risk of educating myself to have the knowledge and the wisdom to comprehend things.
If you grew up in the era of Dr. King, and then look around you today, you see the black community in shambles, societally-speaking.
Those that HAVE taken Dr. King's teachings to heart have moved on, and away (to become better people) from what troubles too many of the blacks in America today.
Dr. King would never want hand outs to his people, when they can just as easily get a HAND UP from a caring soul.
And Dr. King would never want his people to become MORE "equal" than everyone else, just because they're black.
The color of one's skin was NEVER to be at the bottom of any issue, but rather the content of one's character, as Dr; King once said.
And that's the way people are to be judged...period.
A person's CHARACTER will show to you much about that person...more than the color of their skin, and that's the way I take people...one at a time.
The content of their character will tell ME all I need to know.
That is why I will divide the black community into TWO distinct groups.
The ones I would treat as a friend...someone I could call "brother" and would help in a heartbeat, and those who have taken Dr. King's "dream" and pissed it all up against the nearest wall. And we all know by which name the latter are called.
Today's (urban) black experience consists of things which would be anathema to Dr. King and what he believed.
The squalor that blacks allow themselves to live in, the depravity and substance abuse that is so very rampant in cities, along with the criminal gangs and increasing murder rates all bear out the fact that something is horrendously WRONG with these people.
The levels of violent behavior (toward other races as well as THEIR OWN), the thefts from anyone and everyone, the blatant disrespect for ALL authority, and the ignorance and apathy attuned to a sub-culture that operates by it's OWN set of rules and "laws", outside society (ask ANY police officer on this one) within the black community serves NO useful purpose and says nothing about anyone's "civil rights".
If anything, such behavior DENIES those same rights to others, and yet we now call that cultural diversity...
(and that would take a few more posts to explain all that stuff)
Yeah, I'm a white man, and I'm calling out the black community for NOT living up to, nor pursuing the DREAM that Dr. King envisioned.
And were Dr. King alive, he would be doing likewise...only MORE so!
I'm no better than any other man, but I KNOW what's right.
I have learned what is important in life, and I do believe in the messages that Dr. King spoke about.
If such important words can apply to me, they sure as hell can apply to every other man, woman or child, especially if their skin color is different from mine. And maybe, it's high time these black community "leaders" got BACK behind their pulpits and preached such good and noble words, instead of inciting civil unrest so they can make a few bucks along the way.
God is not scorned, and I have a feeling many of these religious men will find that out, if not in THIS life, then in the next one for sure.
So, remember Dr. King...remember the man, and even though the man passes from us, the BELIEFS and WORDS carry on far longer.
Such ideas...such concepts are what we all need to cling to.
I'll leave you with a few quotes of Dr. King...just for something to think about.
--I submit that an individual who breaks a law that conscience tells him is unjust, and who willingly accepts the penalty of imprisonment in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the highest respect for the law.
--Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.
--Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.
--Intelligence plus character--that is the goal of true education.
--I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.
Have a great week.
Be well, make a difference to someone, and...
Stay safe out there, America.


CWMartin said...

(Stands back and claps). Perhaps more of those black leaders would step out and lead as you suggest if Bill Cosby hadn't already done so and got lampooned for it. It seems to be the kind of black leader that gets time in the media, you have to start from the ideas "nothing is ever our fault" and "nothing is ever our responsibilty."

Bob G. said...

It's when you DO get lampooned that you speak out with MORE intensity and MORE verve.

Black leaders are only concerned with "air time" and NOT with THE MESSAGE (just their OWN agenda).

The problems IN the black community IS their fault...and it IS their responsibility.

I know I for one, will NEVER feel any guilt over THEIR problems even if I am one of those that can actually SEE the problems.
(and I'm sure you feel likewise)

King brought ALL people a lot more TOGETHER...and what passes for leadership TODAY, only serves to foment distrust and keep people apart.

But hey, that's only what I see and hear.

Thanks so much for taking time to drop by and comment.
Always appreciated.

Stay safe (and warm) up there.