How Dr. Martin Luther King Would Respond To September 11

1044 words - 4 pages

Martin Luther King's teachings stand at the core of the strong foundation of America. Today, terrorism, war and recession are seeping in, cracking that foundation and eroding civil rights and civil liberties. And while the teachings of Dr. King came many years ago, they are especially relevant to us today as we struggle with painful losses and difficult questions about the future of America.

President Bush announces almost daily that the U.S.-led attacks on Afghanistan will lead to justice. Although there may be no other realistic options at this stage of this particular conflict, Dr. King¹s teachings encouraging non-violence give us an idea of what lies ahead if our leaders aren¹t especially careful in managing the war and its aftermath.

 

In a sermon Dr. King delivered on November 6, 1956 in Montgomery, Alabama, he said, "As you press on for justice, be sure to move with dignity and discipline, using only the weapon of love. Let no man pull you so low as to hate him. Always avoid violence. If you succumb to the temptation of using violence in your struggle, unborn generations will be the recipients of a long and desolate night of bitterness, and your chief legacy to the future will be an endless reign of meaningless chaos"(King).

 

The debate over what caused the attacks of September 11 may continue for decades. What¹s important for President Bush, Attorney General Ashcroft and Defense Secretary Rumsfeld to remember is that what they do now and in the near future will have serious ramifications for their children and grandchildren, as well as ours.

 

Dr. King believed that violence begets violence in an endless cycle. As he stated in a sermon delivered on November 17, 1957 in Montgomery, Alabama, the only way to stop the cycle is to "inject within the very structure of the universe that strong and powerful element of love"(King). Yes, this may sound unrealistic, even ridiculous, to the cynical or to those who have experienced the most tragic of losses at the hand of those America is attacking. But tolerance, if not love, is the only way that anyone can move beyond desperate reincarnations of violence. America is far from foreign policy nirvana, but that does not mean that our leaders should shy away from trying to attain it. Only the seemingly impossible goals are truly worth reaching.

 

Some politicians are even using recent events as a way to make civil liberties selectively available. The application of military tribunals to cases involving foreigners suspected of terrorism caused the Spanish government to refuse to extradite a suspect in the September 11 attacks unless the United States agreed to a civilian trial. Clearly, other countries are skeptical of America¹s new policies that Mr. Ashcroft claims are necessary to fight terrorism.

 

This is not to say that the answer is to become more isolationist. Indeed, long before globalization became part of popular parlance, Dr. King recognized...

Find Another Essay On How Dr. Martin Luther King Would Respond to September 11

Biography of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr

1028 words - 5 pages “I’m going to turn this world upside down “said the young Martin Luther king Jr. (1). Martin Luther king Jr. had a dream and a promise that one day this world would be different and we will be free. That dream grew and grew until he let the world know. He was born in his family home in Atlanta on Tuesday January 15, 1929. Martin was the first son but he had a sister named Christine. His two parents were Martin Luther King Sr. and Alberta

How Martin Luther King would have Viewed Comments about Hurricane Katrina

930 words - 4 pages If Martin Luther King Jr. was still alive today, he would not agree with a lot of social justice issues of our present times. Martin Luther King would be proud of how far we have come from his time and day. Mr. King was a man of peaceful dealings and longed for interracial equality. He had great moral standards and was an incredible hero of the nineteenth century. Recently in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, there have been many

Comparing and Contrasting Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. & Malcolm X

2117 words - 8 pages Malcolm X as "a charismatic speaker who could play an audience as great musicians play instruments (Cone). Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s speech “Beyond Vietnam” was about his disagreement with the war in Vietnam. He feels as if it is the responsibility of the citizens of the United States to end the dispute between both countries (King). He talks about the Poverty Program, and how it was supposed to give hope to the poor blacks and whites (King

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the Civil Rights Movement

1410 words - 6 pages Rights Movement, was a civil rights leader who had a different approach then Martin Luther King Jr. His practices were more aggressive and violent compared to Dr. King’s peaceful protests. Malcolm X was the most visible spokesman for the Black Muslims. (Malcolm X Biography…) He preached that racial integration would amount to nothing, and instead, called for more racial separation. He also criticized those who followed the non violent method to

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.: His Dream Our Reality!

1369 words - 5 pages The date was August 28, 1963, when the world would make a change of history for the better. It all started off when Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. presented his famous “I Have a Dream” speech at the Lincoln memorial. The crowd was filled with different varieties of people that were all gathered up to acknowledge Dr. Kings philosophy and purpose. This world would have been different if not for Dr. King’s speech presenting his ideas and main goals

Martin Luther King Jr.: How Society Changed

1084 words - 5 pages letter describing the cruelty of Birmingham (Boerst 12). In King’s letter, he blamed the white community for its unequal treatment of African Americans. He also wanted the protestors to make a stand that would force white officials to negotiate African American rights. Martin Luther King Jr. and Ralph Abernathy were released on bond after eight days in jail. Meanwhile, King’s letter became famous for proof of nonviolent protests (14). The letter

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and The Civil Rights Movement

1201 words - 5 pages movement. Likewise for Malcolm X who, although did not believe in being passive, decided to leave the Nation of Islam because their practices were becoming to radical for his liking and instead wanted to focus on tranquility and equality. In conclusion, Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X were two different individuals that were more similar than one would think. Both men had a different viewpoint on how issues of discrimination should be handled

The Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr

660 words - 3 pages Dr. Martin Luther King was a great man. He was one of the few men of his time that believed that people of different racial backgrounds can come together. Dr. King believed in the concept of the Beloved Community, and non violence. In his speech Franklin S. Hill, talked about many things, a few he mentioned are, how King brought Christian beliefs to everyone, and what King did is for a worthy cause. I believe that having the march to support

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the Ethic of Love

1513 words - 6 pages The civil rights movement was a period in the United States in which African-Americans actively started to demand equality for themselves. It was a movement to end prejudice and segregation against black people so that African-Americans could live as freely as white people. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.—a very popular civil rights leader during the civil rights movement—is considered one of the most influential people during this time due to

The Civil Rights Movement and Dr. Martin Luther King

2242 words - 9 pages The Civil Rights Movement and Dr. Martin Luther King The Civil Rights movement is still identified by people across the world with Dr Martin Luther King. His day of birth is remarked with a national holiday in the United States and there are many historic sites dedicated to MLK across the nation. His funeral in Atlanta on 9th April 1968 was attended by political leaders from around the world and later in 1977 King was

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and His Transcendental Idea

2217 words - 9 pages generation of Americans, inspiring them with the celebration of uniqueness, caring about others, and independent thinking. With the inspiration coming from Thoreau and Emerson, Dr. King told the people why they should act on the injustice, how they should act on the injustice, and what they need to know to back up their positions. Works Cited Emerson, Ralph Waldo. “Self-Reliance.” The Norton Anthology of American Literature 2003: 842, 839. Thoreau, Henry David. “Civil Disobedience.” The Norton Anthology of American Literature 2003: 544, 553. King, Martin Luther Jr. “Letter from the Birmingham jail.” Why We Can't Wait 1963: 77-100.

Similar Essays

Dr. Martin Luther King Essay

1083 words - 5 pages For many Martin Luther King Jr. is famously known for his celebrated phrase, “I have a dream,” speech. Though he served a much greater purpose, one must first look to his Christian beliefs to understand the reverend which gave him the language, spiritual strength and community to fuel and sustain his singular efforts for justice, peace and freedom. Martin Luther King Jr. was born in Atlanta, Georgia on January 15, 1929 into a line of pastors

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr Essay

1456 words - 6 pages The pressure of racial segregation was reaching a boiling point in 1963 in Birmingham, Alabama. After being arrested for his part in the Birmingham Campaign, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. wrote an open letter in response to "A Call for Unity", written by eight white clergymen from Birmingham. King's "Letter from Birmingham Jail" is a true call for unity, as he clearly states and points out facts that the clergymen have omitted from their letter

Complexities Of Dr. Martin Luther King

1301 words - 5 pages Martin Luther King, Jr.’s impact on the civil rights movement was nothing short of monumental. To say anything less may be considered sacrilege in the history of the United States. King’s liberal and Christian upbringing, comfortable and educated childhood, and his theological education all played a large part in his contributions to civil rights in America. Perhaps one of his most sustained acts was his ability to represent the plight of

Biography Of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr

4036 words - 16 pages April 27, 1927. Growing up on her father's farm, she learned to work hard before attending Antioch College. King's parents opposed the marriage at first, but King prevailed and the marriage took place in June of 1953. King Jr. and Coretta had four children: Yolanda (b. November 17, 1955), Martin Luther III (b. October 23, 1957), Dexter (b. January 30, 1961), and Bernice Albertine (b. March 28, 1963). In September of 1954 while still working on