January 16th, 2012 | by WW Editorial Staff News | Posted In: Politics, Activism

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day: Stuff To Read, Stuff To Do

mlk

WW gathered together a little reading material in honor of MLK Day.

An argument against dreamers, from Wilmer Leon at The Root:

What has troubled me over the years is how his revolutionary message has been hijacked, compromised and relegated to being that of just a dreamer.

People are comfortable with dreamers. Why? Dreamers are safe and in a restful state. Dreamers are docile and easy to manipulate. To cast King in the light of a dreamer allows people to be convinced that substantive change resulting from clear vision and direct action is not necessary.

All too often, King "the dreamer" is taken out of the historical context within which he developed.
Some local historical context, from the Oregon Department of Education's timeline of the state's racial laws:
1848    Oregon’s Provisional Government passes the first Exclusion Law in the Oregon Country. It is unlawful for any Negro or Mulatto (of mixed ethnic heritage) to reside in Oregon Territory.
A nearly 4,000-page reminder of what King was up against, from the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Here are some volunteer opportunities on this national day of service.

To see King in his courageous prime, the Clinton Street Theater is, for the eighth consecutive year, showing the Sidney Lumet documentary, King: A Filmed Record... Montgomery to Memphis. It screens at 7 and 9 pm for a suggested donation of $6.

And if the holiday caught you by surprise, wait until February 8, when author (and Rent-a-Negro.com founder) Damali Ayo gives two city-sponsored presentations on how you can "fix racism" at the Portland Building.
 
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