On MLK Day: 7 Questions
The Reverend Martin Luther King Jr, said:
"Life's most persistent and urgent questions is, 'What are you doing for others?’"
Here are 7 more questions that seem urgent and important to me. How would you answer them?
1. Is Martin Luther King Day More Than a Day Off?
Yes. It’s a day to reflect on a courageous life lived for the betterment of human kind. Dr King was a man of faith who let his private faith stir his public fight for justice. He wasn’t a perfect man, but God used him mightily. That should give us all hope.
2. Do You Have Something Worth Dying for?
Yes. I believe I do, though only the ultimate test would prove it. The only other evidence is how I live.
Dr King lived and died for his fight for racial equality. He received criticisms and threats that would make our blood run cold, but he didn’t back down. How about us? Do we have principles we believe in and are willing to sacrifice for? Do we give our time, money, and energy to the service of God and others?
3. Do Black Lives Matter?
I am not an expert on racial issues in America, nor do I know enough about the organization, "Black Lives Matter" to endorse it. But without a doubt the lives of African-Americans matter.
Some will ask, "Don't all lives matter?" I say, of course. But not all lives have been enslaved in this country. The oppression didn’t end when the Civil War was won. It raged throughout the 20th century and stubbornly persists today. We should care, listen, and learn.
4. Do Police Officers Deserve Our Support?
Yes. We must weed-out corruption, to be sure, but we must also support the women and men who protect and serve us faithfully. People who wear a badge put themselves in harm’s way every time they go to work. We should assume the best of police officers as you want them to assume the best of us.
5. Should Brown People Care About Black Lives?
Yes. I confess that as a Latino man, I have my own issues and prejudices. When it comes to issues of race, I mostly feel left out. But I need to set my issues aside, listen, learn, and stand for justice in our communities.
6. Do White Lives Matter?
Yes. I know so many amazing people of non-color who are devoted to serving black lives, brown lives, and every other colored lives. This is nothing new but should definitely be acknowledged. White people are making a difference in so many ways every day. (Have you hugged a white person lately?)
7. Should We Think About Racial Issues Every Day?
Yes. And a book that will help your thinking is Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption, by Bryan Stevenson. My son recommended this to me and it touched me profoundly. It will touch you too.