According to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” The United States of America is amid some challenging and controversial times. It is ringing loud from the seat of the Oval Office. It is being displayed in the streets by fiery protesters. It is being felt in the hearts of the underpaid and overworked.
We must be fully aware and informed of the daily happenings in Washington, D.C. and in our local communities, simultaneously. We cannot afford to be asleep in critical days like these. Because, by the wave of a pen and an executive order, our advancement can be quickly eroded. The call may sound from Washington. The laws may not be passed at the federal level, but they may be written and implemented into state statutes. For that reason, the idea of “all politics are local” will be ever so applicable under the current administration. Socioeconomic action must be our first reaction. It is going to take more than marching. It is going to take movement to the ballot box. It is going to take petitions being passed by parishioners. It is going to take the “Talented Tenth” to tame a tyrant. It is going to take us redressing our grievances against the government. It is going to take the conscious to remain woke and wake the slumbering. It is going to take esoteric people sharing with the marginalized and vulnerable. It is going to take a collective to converge around an agenda.
Furthermore, Dr. King stated, “When evil men plot, good men must plan. When evil men burn and bomb, good men must build and bind. When evil men conspire to preserve an unjust status quo, good men must unite to bring about the birth of a society undergirded by justice.” It is our obligation, as good men and women, to plan our path and disassemble their plot. We must pose the questions, “Are we going to allow the whims of Washington to dictate our fate, or are we going to prevail despite the pressure?” Are we going to allow a wall to be constructed that divides instead of unites? Are we going to bind ourselves and be beneficent of our Muslim brothers and sisters? Are we going to uphold the Constitution and require that others abide by its founding principles, or are we going to let these events fester like a sore and stink like rotten meat? Are we going to allow one hundred plus days of decline in our nation to cause it to lay waste for four years? Are we going to stay idle as 45 and a Cabinet runs roughshod over our civil rights and liberties?”
Even the most novice students of history know that we fight for the right. No challenge is too great. No controversy is too strong to break us. Our ancestors endured far more than the living and unborn could fathom. For that reason, we must get uncomfortable and inconveniently be engaged in the political process.