“Who Cares about King?”

Posted on April 10, 2015 by PLT Staff

Paper presented by Don Davis at the second meeting of the Lived Theology and Community Building Workgroup in New York City. Davis confronts the ambivalence in the United States towards Martin Luther King’s vision and legacy, pointing out that, in the words of Charles Adams, “it is easier to praise a dead hero than to recognize and follow a living prophet.” Forty years on, some praise King as a potent nonviolent leader while others see him as a naive assimilationist whose victories have no bearing today. Davis argues that King’s vision of human community should be studied, discussed, implemented, and cherished.

Excerpt: “First, we should care about King’s vision because of the hope his vision generates for us in pursuing the good for each other in our shared relationships…. Second, we ought be concerned about King’s legacy because he anchored all issues of justice and peace making between individuals and peoples in the fundamental dignity of all human beings…. Finally, I believe we ought to care for King’s vision in a serious way because of his understanding of the interconnected and shared realities of all peoples and nations on earth.”

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