Remembering dr. King, Why The Civil Rights Struggle Continues -- Jumaane Williams

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Dr. King had the Herculean task of trying to pull President Johnson and the United States a little into the 20th century. Photo: Wikimediacommons
 
Today we honor the life and legacy of a man whose impact on our nation and the world is immeasurable, a man whom I have always counted among my personal heroes. 
 
Dr. King was one of the most visionary leaders, most effective activists, most inspirational figures, in our history. He committed, and ultimately lost, his life to the fight for justice and equity, to creating transformational change, and inspired so many to take up that fight.
 
Many of the injustices that Dr. King fought against still exist today, despite a veil of perceived equality that many wear for their own comfort. But inequity in this country, and in New York, remains pervasive. The Civil Rights Movement was not a moment in history, but is an ongoing struggle of the oppressed and the "other" in society. On race, on religion, on sexual orientation and gender identity, the movement continues. Progress and improvement cannot be allowed to serve as a stand-in for real equity. The fight continues and even escalates as we work not only to move forward but to preserve the gains made over decades.
 
Every year on this day, we see attempts by many to sanitize and misconstrue the message and legacy of Dr. King, to misuse his words in service of their own agenda. To everyone who continues to support the bigotry of Trump who would dare discuss Dr. King today- keep his name out of your mouth. Stripping his quotations of their context, his words of their weaponry, is disrespectful to one of the greatest agitators in our history. 
 
We cannot condone this willful distortion of a man who was a fierce activist, an unapologetic leader, a nonviolent revolutionary. Rather, we must take up the very causes for which he fought. Dr. King declared that 'the  moral arc of the universe is long, but it bends towards justice. We must continue on that arc, each fighting for justice in our lives and our society.
 
 
 
 
 
 

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