Update from Kate - Thoughts Offered About The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

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Update from Kate

Celebrating Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

These are thoughts I offered at the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Celebration in Marin City on Monday, January 21, 2019.

One of the many things we celebrate about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is that he spoke truths that most did not want to hear. Today, truth feels like a rare commodity indeed.

We have a president who, in the first nine months of his presidency, made an average of 5 false or misleading claims a day. In the seven weeks leading up to the midterm elections in November, that number increased to 30 false statements every day. We live in a country where misinformation, and the manipulation of fear and hatred, poison national policy and public opinion.

This is not the vision that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. held for our country. His words about hatred and love continue to ring true and inspire us to change. For as Dr. King said,

Hatred paralyzes life, love releases it.

Hatred confuses life, love harmonizes it.

Hatred darkens life, love illuminates it.

By coming together today and honoring Dr. King, we remind ourselves that, together, with “unarmed truth and unconditional love,” we can push back the paralysis, confusion and darkness that afflict our nation.

There are a host of critical ongoing challenges that confront us -- social, racial and economic inequity, lack of affordable housing, traffic congestion, homelessness, mental health, and increased fire danger and higher flood waters of climate change.

In 2019 let’s confront these challenges with a sense of renewal.

Renewal of our enthusiasm, our energy, and our commitment to collaboration, to communication, to shared values, to tackling what challenges us most, and to doing the best we can for our county, our community, and for ourselves.

We address our challenges with a sense of renewal, I believe, by,

Being Appreciative - of the skills and experience that others have to offer, and of the beauty that surrounds us

Being Creative - embracing innovation, being flexible and accepting uncertainty

Being Attentive - convening and listening to each other, and understanding the context and stories that affect how each of us operates in the world

Being Rooted in Reality, in Community and Within Ourselves - this is the honesty, integrity, and relatedness piece that perhaps matters most

Robert Kennedy once said that, “We can move in the direction as a country, in greater polarization – black people amongst blacks, and white amongst whites, filled with hatred toward one another. Or we can make an effort, as Martin Luther King Jr. did, to understand and to comprehend, and replace that violence, that stain of bloodshed that has spread across our land, with an effort to understand, compassion and love…. What we need in the United States is not division; what we need in the United States is not hatred; what we need in the United States is not violence and lawlessness, but is love and wisdom, and compassion toward one another, and a feeling of justice toward those who still suffer within our country, whether they be white or whether they be black.”


Amen to that.