Martin Luther King Jr., what a man he was (the title of this post – that’s his quote by the way). It took him a lot of courage and strength to stand up for what was right in our society, for what he believed in. It took him a lot of courage to face thousands of people who judged him and was against him. It took immense strength for him to take a chance, to be fearless, to be the change he wished to see in the world in hopes that people could live peacefully amongst one another.
Freedom to be who you are. Freedom to love despite color. Freedom to live in a country which is the land of the… free! Well, that freedom costed quite a bit.
It costed Martin Luther King Jr. his life. A fight in hopes to abolish racism. And yet here we are 45 years later since the day he lost his life. In a country where we’re still struggling trying to embrace people and accept them for who they are, by “not” defining them by the color of their skin, or their religion, or their ethnicity, or their sexuality.
Look, let’s face it. It can be a cruel unfair world to live in. Especially when innocent people don’t deserve this kind of treatment and have to suffer the consequences. Many are indeed trying to foster humanity and growth, a higher consciousness and awareness where we can all love and accept each and every person with no judgment.
Yesterday I was reading several comments and posts via Google News and Facebook regarding our first Indian-American Miss America, Nina Davuluri. The number of racist remarks directed towards this young woman who is deserving of nothing less than an equal opportunity. To be honest, I was quite blown away seeing these remarks. She’s American and she’s Indian so… what’s new? It’s practically the norm now. I mean, look around you. How many Hispanics, Asians, African-Americans, Japanese, Indians, Caucasians, Muslims, Hindus, Mixed, etc. are you surrounded by on a daily basis? We live in quite a colorful and ethnic country (not to mention beautiful by the way) and as you know, it’s been quite some time that ethnic individuals are born as natural American citizens. You would think by now racism would surely be a thing of the past. But it’s still a dream. And we still have a way to go.
Racism is just a form of judgment. We pass judgment upon another. We judge innocent people for the mere actions of those who act poorly. The innocent pays the consequences. Take the few individuals and the 9/11 attacks. How many innocent Muslims had to suffer the humiliation and pain because of the poor choices of those responsible for the actual attacks? Even myself who’s not a Muslim certainly experienced my share of embarrassment and humiliation at the airport on numerous occasions. I know how it feels. It’s easier for society to point the finger versus take responsibility. It’s easier for society to blame because someone has to be held responsible. It’s easier to find fault, to criticize and to direct our anger towards others versus looking within our own selves and facing the truth there.
I believe everyone has either judged or been judged in their life. We’ve all done it. We criticize other people’s way of thinking, other people’s religions, their choices in life, their eating habits, their ways of parenting. The list goes on.
Our country is still having a hard time accepting people and just letting them “be”. We’ve come far and we’ve made great progress but we still have a ways ahead of us. In the meantime, let’s use Nina Davuluri as an example in response to the racist remarks who says “I have to rise above that.”
To all the Indian-Americans, Latin-Americans, African-Americans, Asian-Americans, Caucasian-Americans, Native-Americans, Irish-Americans and any other Americans I left out, let’s rise above that and continue spreading the love no matter what! Let’s continue spreading the love and treating others the way we would like to be treated. Because regardless, we are all human, we are all one and because we should never ever forget that “hate is too great a burden to bear.”