Action, not wishful thinking, fulfills visions

Published 2:30 pm Friday, April 6, 2018

This week, the 50th anniversary of the late Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination has been noted and discussed in media and with tributes of all kinds. The famed civil rights leader was felled by a bullet from James Earl Ray’s gun on April 4, 1968, at a motel in Memphis, Tennessee.

Naturally, the conversation has focused on the late civil rights leader’s dream of racial equality and harmony. This goal was not based merely on fleeting images seen during sleep, but on the waking hope and need for people to get along and even thrive in spite of differences in skin color or beliefs.

As one might expect, the question has arisen whether or not King’s dream has been realized, or if it’s even achievable.

To the latter, we say absolutely yes.

Visions such as the one that King had are not something that can be realized in a single lifetime, but over generations. They require both patience and activity.

Expecting people’s attitudes to change overnight is naïve at best. Everyone can work toward better relations among every race — this isn’t just a white-and-black issue.

Respecting other men, women and children on a daily basis is a simple, but profound start.

Good manners cost nothing and they go a long way. Then there are the more visible tools of campaigning, voting and getting involved to create laws that can improve lives.

Don’t wait for other people to take such actions. You are needed to make that vision a reality.

Consider that hymn that people sing in church: “Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me.”