"I have a dream..."
When I turned on my phone this morning, I remembered that today is Martin Luther King Jr. Day--a federal holiday in the United States. At Dirty Freedom Adventures, we admire Dr. King and his courage and strength to stand up and unite against inequality using nonviolent means. We admire anyone who picks up the baton to fight peacefully against racism, sexism, and religious oppression (meaning freedom of religion and freedom from religion). We celebrate the triumphs of all people, of all races, of all creeds. We celebrate the triumphs of women. We celebrate the triumphs of those who have been discriminated against because of a "disability." We celebrate the triumphs of our LGBT friends. We celebrate the triumphs of any group that has felt the sting of oppression or disparate treatment over the ages and for those who continue to fight today.
My dream is that someday this world can eliminate the words "discrimination" and "oppression" from the lexicon simply because those things, as defined, have ceased to exist. Perhaps they stay in Webster's but only for historical usage. "Back in the day, people used to discriminate against X for X...." I want our children to know love, not hate.
In my humble opinion, Dr. King's credo and mission are perfect examples of just how big "dirty freedom" can be. He knew it would be a difficult, ugly, dirty, and frightening endeavor. But he conquered his fears and used his charisma and people skills to improve the rights of African Americans in America and elsewhere. He knew that freedom was worth fighting for, just as everyone who fought for equal rights knew before him and knows after him. Unfortunately, he paid the ultimate price with his life. Though he died almost 50 years ago, his legacy continues to shape American and world culture. And this particular battle for dirty freedom rages on. We will win.
I ask anyone who reads this post today to do two small favors for us: 1) Stop sometime today and have a moment of silence, prayer, mediation, or whatever in honor of Dr. King and what he stood for, and 2) do something--however small--that recognizes and reveres rights of every citizen on this planet to live and let live. Maybe you let that driver who everyone else is cutting off go in front of you, and do it with a smile! Maybe you make a small donation to a charity. Maybe you go out of your way to greet someone who is from a different race or religion. Maybe you feed someone who is cold and hungry. I have often said that if everyone would just follow the Golden Rule, the world would instantly become Nirvana. "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." If you are moved to do any such act of kindness today, please share in the comments. We can all learn from each other, and love is infectious.
Go and spread your dirty freedom with everyone today.