Danny describes himself as follows:
“I’m a bit of an anomaly; I’m a military vet (with a disability rating), I work in public safety, and a white guy from Mississippi. None of this would be noteworthy, except that I’m likely the only white guy in my office who voted (twice) for Obama, favors universal background checks & sensible gun control, campaign finance reform, and a strict separation of church and state. Middle-aged, tattooed, earrings… Most people in my sphere don’t know what to make of me.”
Here’s what Danny wrote:
There was once a man who dared to challenge the status quo.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. held the audacious belief that human rights should apply to all humans, instead of being reserved for those who sought to marginalize others. This man actually believed the words of the Emancipation Proclamation from 1863, and felt that 100 years of gradual and grudging acceptance were quite enough.
When America was sending astronauts into space, people were still being killed for trying to exercise their legal rights, being hung by lynch mobs for the crime of having been born.
Instead of fighting animalistic violence with the same, this man chose to be more civilized than his oppressors. He took the path of greater resistance; turning the other cheek when struck, and resolutely continuing his insistent march with dignity. He showed, in fact, that one need not surrender that dignity in the face of violence and oppression. The power of hate and ignorance are as nothing compared to the strength of human spirit and determination.
Some people feared this message so much, they tried to extinguish the message by killing the messenger, Dr Martin Luther King, Jr. These witless fools completely misunderstood the concepts at work, and created a martyr whose dream of true equality is carried on and celebrated today.
We still live in a society where some people marginalize and seek to oppress those who appear different. Racism, that slow-witted and fearful beast, still reigns in an embarrassingly large potion of our society. Change is still agonizingly slow to come, yet marches forward in a righteous, relentless quest to make us better than we were. Those who yet oppose this change are dying off more quickly than new bigots are being made. The holdouts will inevitably find themselves on the wrong side of history, because the tide is turning.
Today’s youth is better-informed, thus less bigoted and more inclusive than ever before. By and large, they tend to reject the narrow-mindedness of their forbears, and embrace a society where all are, indeed, created equal.
The dream is alive.
Thank you, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. You’re still winning.
– Danny Williams
Thank you Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and thank you Danny for writing this excellent tribute to the man we celebrate today.
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