Monday, January 19, 2009

Why Dr, King was the greatest American of all

He never owned slaves.

He never wrote documents that empowered only men with land.

He left his family to take his message of non-violence and equal rights around the nation and was repeatedly jailed.

He received a Nobel Prize for his courage, faith and wisdom.

He came out in opposition to a war, despite alienating his political friends in Washington.

He faced down state troopers, police and elected officials who he knew hated him and wanted to take a fist to his face and gun to his head.

He never raised a weapon, despite some black leaders and activists who demanded a violent response to all the violence aimed at them. This nation could have been caught up in another civil war. Dr. King prevented that.

He knew he would one day be murdered, and on the night before his assassination, he had a grace-filled moment of telling people in need that he feared no man, that longevity indeed has its place, but he had seen the promised land and that was enough.

For these reasons and more, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is the greatest American of all time. No other man or woman approaches in this nation's history approaches his resume.

And today, his birthday and ideals should be rightly celebrated and emulated and taught to our children.

He is not a black hero but an American hero, the greatest of all.

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