On this Martin Luther King Day I find myself reflecting on the many who give lip service to his dream and the too few who live the dream.
Far too many of those who voice support for equal rights cut and run if supporting equal rights proves inconvenient, or, perish the thought, costs them money. The ranks of the profits-over-people crowd remain sickeningly large.
I know one man we will call Oopsie. Oopsie, a church goer at that, voices support for equal rights, fairness, and human decency with a voice so sniffily sweet he could kill a diabetic at 100 yards. But when push comes to shove, or his income might drop a notch, his hypocrisy is revealed. Like too many others, he will preach one view as long as that view stands a chance of opening doors that will make him some money or at least not lose him any, the hell with equal rights, the Oopsies of the world say.
King’s remarkable I Have a Dream speech and the reality of his life is a reminder to all of us that the fight for equal rights requires much more than lip service. Whether by intention or default, the profits-over-people crowd – packed with Oopsies – does nothing more than support the very forces that deny equal rights.
And so on this day we pray the Oopsies among us grow their humanity; to contribute to the denial of equal rights is to diminish your own humanity and the humanity of others. In the meantime, those of us who do our best to live the dream, rather than just talk the dream, will keep on keeping on.
We miss you Martin.
We shall overcome.