Today we celebrate a man who Elliot called “The President” and then “our King” before I understood who she was talking about. Last Wednesday she wanted to tell me about school – something she reserves for, you know THE VERY SECOND I’m about to tuck her in. It’s a solid move because she knows I’ll listen, desperate for kindergarten gossip or literally anything that brings me into her 6-year-old world. So when I asked her, “Wait, who did you learn about?”, she cutely and matter of factly said, “King Marthin Luther”. And while that extra H in “Marthin” was technically “not right”, I was into her rearranging the surname and didn’t want to correct her on either matter. He wasn’t president, but she wasn’t wrong – he sure was a KING in his own right.
I think we can all agree that daily action and celebration are what’s necessary when it comes to talking about race and fighting for equality – not just MLK Day or Black History Month. And listen, while I’m not the person to comment on the “progress” that’s been made or not made in the last 2 years, I will say that the conversations haven’t stopped in life, and in fact, most of my work friends and friend friends, of all races, have become more and more comfortable discussing race, whiteness, and America’s past/present with the goal of pushing things forward. I think the panic of saying something wrong has waned, likely due to being better educated, which puts us all in a better position as parents (and public figures) to better raise (or influence) the next generation. We’ll all continue to make mistakes, but like anything, the more you practice and flex that muscle (and in this case also listen), the more confident, brave, and better you become. And for that I/we have a lot of you to thank. I mean, thank god for the internet. Despite all the negatives that can come out of social media, it is also an incredible tool for educating yourself.
So today, we celebrate”King Martin Luther” a man who fought to make this country see the harm it was causing and how the future could actually be great and just. And my gosh, the physical and emotional effort that it took, over many, many years is obviously unfathomable to most of us. He did it with such restraint, control, and nuance – which must have been unbelievably difficult, frustrating, and practiced. In short, he worked tirelessly for civil rights and while there has been progress in the last 50 years, we have a long way to go. So we figured that today we would present a few organizations to offer actionable ways to donate and/or volunteer in this fight for his legacy. xx
These amazing organizations are fighting against inequality, white supremacy, and creating equitable opportunities for black people and people of color.
Thanks to all who have contributed to productive conversations over the last two years and continue to do so. The wait was too long. The need is great.
Happy Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.