Today is Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday, and Monday is Martin Luther King Jr. Day here in the United States. Below are some recent stories related to the holiday. For more history on the holiday, as well as Stevie Wonder’s birthday song for the great man, check out this Chimesfreedom post on MLK Day.
– The National Park Service will correct a paraphrased quote on the Martin Luther King Day Jr. Memorial in Washington D.C. The chiseled quote is not only an inaccurate quote, but the change makes it sound like a boast: “”I was a drum major for justice, peace and righteousness.” King actually said in a 1968 speech, “If you want to say that I was a drum major, say that I was a drum major for justice. Say that I was a drum major for peace. I was a drum major for righteousness. And all of the other shallow things will not matter.”
– Occupy Wall Street activists plan to honor King.
– The Grio noted that some people prefer to celebrate Robert E. Lee’s birthday on the King holiday.
– The Milwaukee Courier wrote about “the New South” and the legacy of King.
– Slate has some newly discovered photos taken at the Lorraine Motel around the time King was killed.
– Amnesty International considers what King would think about today’s criminal justice system and what he had to say about capital punishment.
– The Huffington Post collects a number of quotes from MLK. Hopefully these are more accurate than the one chiseled in stone on the memorial.
– Finally, below is a 2009 U2 performance of “MLK,” the final song song from their Unforgettable Fire (1984) album. Here, they use the song as a lead-in to their song “Walk On” from All That You Can’t Leave Behind (2002).
In this 2009 performance, U2 dedicates the songs to Aung San Suu Kyi, a Nobel Peace Prize winner who for fifteen years was under house arrest in Burma to suppress her struggle for democratic freedoms. I think King would have been happy to share his song with her. I think he’d be even prouder to share his birthday weekend this year with Burma’s release of a large number of dissidents and the government signing a cease fire with rebels. Walk on.
(Some Related Chimesfreedom Posts)