Following “the dream” while facing Trump

North Wind Staff

This week we face two historic days that fall on opposite ends of the spectrum. The timing of Martin Luther King Jr. Day comes along with the inauguration of our arguably most controversial president-elect ever, Donald Trump.

re-editorial cartoonHow can we reflect on MLK’s powerful message in light of today’s issues? A man who so righteously preached equality and unity for all needs to be remembered. We cannot forget how far we’ve come in this country in our efforts to achieve total equality. Neither can we forget we still have far to go.

When comparing MLK to Trump, they are dissimilar. One dreamed that all people could come together as a single united nation, while the other dreams of tearing us apart by using our differences.

We must consider the character of the president-elect and take a hard look at what our future holds.

In a time when continuing to move forward is pivotal, we’ve taken a step back. It is difficult to honor MLK when we elect a man who has claimed to “have a great relationship with the blacks.”

In this time of transition and change, we must question what sets a standard for democracy. Human beings should not be divided into groupings of skin color, wealth or gender. We cannot afford to descend into the past.

Moving forward into a new presidency, we need to recognize that a united nation is much stronger than a broken one. There needs to be a greater focus on what we have in common as American citizens and families, rather than what makes us different.

MLK deserves to be honored. His message was of “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” and “inalienable rights” guaranteed to all, regardless of class, gender or race. If MLK were alive today, how would he see the United States or Donald Trump? Would he see us still living in the shadows of the past?

We are not yet living in “the dream” that MLK depicted powerfully in his speech, but we are reminded to fight for our rights, as well as the rights of others. We are reminded to recognize a problem and speak up to rise to the challenge of overcoming it. And in this era of Trump leadership, we are reminded to choose love and unity over ignorance and hate.