It’s time to revive King’s philosophy

Published 12:00 am Sunday, January 11, 2004

The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is perhaps most often remembered for his stirring oratory. His &uot;I Have a Dream&uot; speech has earned a lasting place in the American lexicon.

But King also propounded a well-thought out philosophy based on nonviolence. By combining the two he changed the American landscape.

After King’s assassination, however, his philosophy of nonviolence fell into disrepute. Ironically, America’s prophet of nonviolence was himself felled by violence. Today we find ourselves and our culture seemingly mired in a never-ending stream of violent and senseless acts.

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Today’s Times-Journal details the attempt by a group of Selma citizens to dust off King’s philosophy and give it new life. This week, attorney J.L. Chestnut Jr. and Barbara Brown will speak to students at Selma High School and Selma Middle C.H.A.T. Academy on the subject of nonviolence.

It’s all part of a coordinated effort to reduce the tendency among too many of our young people to resort to violence. Organizers also hope to involve former civil rights worker Bernard Lafayette and U.S. Rep. John Lewis in the campaign.

We welcome both Lafayette and Lewis, no strangers to Selma, and their involvement in this effort. And we support the efforts of those who chose not to remain on the sidelines, but to step up and once demonstrate that the continued viability of King’s philosophy.