Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Reflecting on Dr. King's Legacy

Last year, almost to the day, I marched with the lovely connally  from Mediacom Park to Central High School in Springfield, MO. It was an experience I will not easily forget.  For the first time, I felt as if I was walking in the shoes, literally, of those who have fought and fight for their civil liberties.  The police car led the way, and I could not help but imagine how during the Civil Rights Movement how the police cars would have been blocking the way instead. That moment made me feel a part of the history stories I always enjoyed reading about.

 Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “Men hate each other because they fear each other, and they fear each other because they don’t know each other, and they don’t know each other because they are often separated from each other.” Racism, prejudice, and mistreatment of others cut into my soul deeply.


When glancing back through history at slavery, Salem Witch Hunts, Jim Crow Laws, and the Holocaust, it reminds us that it is our job to make this generation better at treating everyone humanly. Milton Bennett, an intercultural communication scholar, put a new perspective on the Golden Rule.  Bennett said, “Do unto other as they would have done to themselves.” By following the Golden Rule, one almost behaves in an ethnocentric manner treating others how one would want to be treated.

Everyone is different, and with all of our differences coming together in the workplace, it is imperative to try to understand and empathize with each other. Like Dr. King said, our hate could simply be because we do not know each other. Even though our country and world has come a long way from that March on Washington years ago, we must continue to deepen our knowledge of one other and learn to celebrate diversity. Pin It


  1. I love this quote and this gave me a greater appreciation for it. I love our shared heart for people.

    And suitcases ;-)

  2. I love MLK-- thanks for posting this, Bethany.