As we commemorate the fiftieth year of the March on Washington and Rev. King’s inspirational and iconic “I Have a Dream” speech, Americans can be thankful for how far the country has advanced regarding civil rights in such a relatively short period of time. All Americans, from the blackest of the black to the whitest of the white- and all shades in between- are forever in debt to those who courageously stood as a testament to freedom, justice and brotherhood.
Of those that stood, Rev. King was front and center in the moral movement against the legally-mandated and immoral practice of Jim Crow segregation- an external threat that sought to keep American blacks in their place- a place that stood in contradiction to the country’s foundationally-stated democratic aims and constitutional ideals. The main reason Rev. King’s speech was so poignant and his public ministry so effective- which precipitated major civil rights legislation- was because he courageously stood in protest demanding biblical justice in an American context with the Constitution in one hand and the Bible in the other.
Rev. King fought to prove that race wasn’t a source of power, meaning there is no virtue nor vice inherent in one’s race and it’s precisely why he dreamed of a nation that judged individuals by the content of their character, rather than the color of their skin.
We as a nation would do well to keep this lesson in mind as there are wolves in sheep’s clothing who continue to promote racial grievance and discord, preferring to use race as an instrument of division at the expense of racial reconciliation. These wolves claim to stand in Rev. King’s shadow while perverting his dream and it’s contemptible. Jesus said a good tree does not bear bad fruit.
King wouldn’t dignify their actions and neither should we.