Throughout the day, as my body—still on Pacific Standard Time—woke reluctantly to a Central Time Zone day, as I helped my son pack and took him to his dorm for the spring semester, as I taught two classes and drove home slowly in falling snow and enjoyed a tuna dinner with my husband, I kept thinking about how I could make today’s post about Martin Luther King, Jr. in a meaningful way. Nothing felt right, and my ideas all seemed trite or opportunistic, yet I didn’t want to write about anything else.

Then a wonderful new post by CAR Williams from her blog Diving Into Beans showed up on my Facebook News Feed. Frozen in a Dream: The Abridged Dr. King is not only meaningful but also helped me to understand my hesitancy. She writes:

“I fear that Dr. King’s legacy has become frozen in time and within this one dream.  We have neatly placed him in a box that fits our needs in discussing issues of race and racism.  If we refuse to look at his work organically, and if we continue to reduce him to a few ‘feel good’ slogans, then there might come a day when America will feel as if he is no longer relevant….

If you ask young people about the accomplishments of Dr. King, some will tell you is that he had a dream that one day “little black boys and little black girls [could] join hands with little white boys and little white girls as sisters and brothers,” or some version of that statement.  But, can they tell you about all that he risked to be able to dream?”  Read More

A good place to begin “to look at his work organically” is The Martin Luther King, Jr. Research and Education Institute.