On this first day of Black History Month, I want to share something that I helped contribute towards recently: An audio reading of the “Letter from Birmingham Jail”. “On April 12, 1963, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and nearly 50 other protestors and civil rights leaders were arrested after leading a Good Friday demonstration as part of the Birmingham Campaign, designed to bring national attention to the brutal, racist treatment suffered by blacks in one of the most segregated cities in America—Birmingham, Alabama.”This letter was written on April 16, 1963, as a response to “A Call for Unity Letter” from white clergymen who “agreed” with Dr. King in that social injustice existed, but believed the issue of racial segregation was an issue exclusively for the courts. The letter criticized Dr. King accusing him of causing trouble in the streets, of being an outsider and of creating tension with sit-ins and demonstrations. “Over the course of the letter’s 7,000 words, he turned the criticism back upon both the nation’s religious leaders and more moderate-minded white Americans, castigating them for sitting passively on the sidelines while King and others risked everything agitating for change.” “For those who thought the Atlanta-based King had no right to interfere with issues in Alabama, King argued, in one of his most famous phrases, that he could not sit “idly by in Atlanta” because “injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”’You can listen to the full audio piece here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CUODuepjtDA

Comments are closed.

Close Search Window