“It says to us first that the oppressor never voluntarily gives freedom to the oppressed. You have to work for it. Freedom is never given to anybody. Privileged classes never give up their privileges without strong resistance.”
—Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
For the past 6 months, I’ve been reading The Autobiography of Martin Luther King, Jr. (Don’t judge me! I’m a busy girl.). And when I heard the news of the shooting at Rep. Gabrielle Giffords’ public constituents meeting, the above quote from King immediately came to mind.
It’s still early in the investigation, and direct political connections haven’t been made, but that doesn’t change some disturbing particulars about our political climate. The rhetoric and imagery that is presently accepted in our political arena is extreme, ridiculous, and dangerous. Rhetoric like “Reload” paired with crosshair imagery has no place in America’s political system. They send dangerous and violent messages that some misinterpret. We are the land of the free. We should be able to have different beliefs and represent various values without receiving death threats to our political offices or being accused of being un-American. The intensity of the hate and anger that is infiltrating our political system is dangerous, and it must be stopped immediately.
Like many in America, I’ve been fascinated with the Tea Party movement. Whether or not you agree with their beliefs, you have to admit the influence they have been able to amass in the past 2-3 years is quite amazing. They will definitely go down in history as one of the most powerful political movements of our time, but have you ever asked yourself why? Why has the Tea Party been able to amass support and revitalize political activism the way they have? Reread Dr. King’s quote above.