Skip to main content

Martin Luther King's Dream is More Alive Than Ever

It is some time since I have written in this blog. Not since before the election of Donald Trump, a man whose offensive behavior and racist, sexist and divisive statements make him unfit to be the president of the United States. And yet he is about to be sworn into office, with a firestorm of controversies engulfing him regarding the election itself, his likely ties to Russia, his refusal to truly divest himself from his businesses and avoid the possibility and appearance of corruption, his continued gross insensitivity to issues of race and gender and poverty, and so much more, clouding his presidency even before he assumes it.

I love America deeply with all my heart. I chose America as the nation in which I wished to live and be a citizen. I believe the vast energy, love and compassion of America will endure long after Donald Trump is out of office. His time is short. America represents, still, with all its complex, painful history, an idea that we can be better as a people, that we can strive for equality and justice. I do not believe that Trump gives much thought to equality and his concept of justice, like so much else in his life, is entirely one-sided. But, his time is short. Four years or less, if he is impeached.

On this shining Martin Luther King holiday, we should celebrate diversity and unity against all those who would divide us. Martin Luther King was non-violent and believed in love, but he was also an immensely courageous man who sacrificed his life to make many millions of other people far more free than they had ever been. President Obama, pictured here reaching across time to the Reverend Doctor King, represents so many of the hopes and dreams and values that MLK personified.

When I wrote on this blog about Martin Luther King Day in 2013, I happened to mention of Barack Obama, "He is our president, we should respect him - and not allow the likes of the moron Donald Trump to be so offensive toward him."

My opinion of Mr Trump has not changed. While he will be our president, I believe he represents a clear and present threat to the values that define America, and our duty is to be ever-watchful and act at every instance of transgression by him and his administration of our laws and the civil rights and liberties that have been so hard won over centuries. 

I look forward to the massive national protest sparked by the Women's March on Washington, the day after the inauguration, on Saturday January 21st 2017. Saturday will give voice to those whom Trump has insulted and attacked and attempted to marginalize, and will represent, in numbers expected to be far higher than for those attending the inauguration itself, a repudiation of the hate and fear that have fueled Donald Trump's campaign and cabinet picks so far.

Let us resist and show our strength but let us do so with love and unity and a clearly defined vision of the future. One day, four years from now (or less if impeachment comes), Trump's presidency will be history. He will cause grave damage, no doubt, but he represents the last of the dinosaurs. The generations rising up ahead are already multicolored and multifaceted and filled with ideals and hopes that bear no relation to the Old World fear-mongering and divisiveness of Donald Trump.

Let's celebrate Martin Luther King Day as the extraordinary event it has always been: a day honoring a man who went so far beyond what the majority of us are ever able to achieve and changed forever how Americans - and how people across the globe - interact with each other. His dream is perhaps the most widely heard and spoken dream ever voiced. It lives on today. Shout it from the mountaintops, from the city streets, from the beaches and bayous and deserts...and from the Mall in Washington, DC. We will hold hands together and we will be free.


Popular posts from this blog

The High Tower Apartments and The Long Goodbye

This beautiful apartment complex in Los Angeles is called the Hightower or High Tower Complex (the High Tower name refers to the central elevator, I believe), and was designed in 1935-1936 by architect Carl Kay - and made famous in 1973 by my favorite film, Robert Altman's The Long Goodbye (see Why I Love Robert Altman's The Long Goodbye).

Although Altman used the building as Philip Marlowe's apartment in his somewhat post-modern Long Goodbye (the film plays with references to Old Hollywood and opens and closes with the song, Hooray For Hollywood), the building has another direct connection to Raymond Chandler.

It was apparently the inspiration for Chandler in his book, The High Window (the first Chandler novel I ever read), in which Chandler describes the residence of Philip Marlowe as being on the cliffs above High Tower Drive in a building with a fancy elevator tower. (Thanks to the Society of Architectural Historians Southern California Chapter webpage for that.) 

This ph…

From Dawn to Sunset on the Beach - Pelicans, Whales and Memories of my Father

This post about my father and the ocean is very important to me right now. It was written when we first moved to Santa Cruz, which we insisted on calling Aldabra because it is so magical...
From Dawn to Sunset on the Beach - Pelicans, Whales and Memories of my Father
Living and writing by the ocean - in a spot we like to call Aldabra (which in reality is a remote and very beautiful atoll in the Indian Ocean) - the beach figures large in my thoughts and daily routine.

Usually I wake early, and on occasion I walk at dawn through the waves, past the occasional fisherperson, enjoying the darkness slowly transforming into light, the spray of the breakers, the pull of the tide around my feet, the constant barking of the sea lions, the damp of the ocean mist - and the sight of the sun breaking over the horizon to the east.

Recently, a few days before what would have been his birthday, I thought of my father as I trod the beach at dawn. He came from a tiny Scottish fishing village, Rosehearty, se…

Andrew Hale and Sade

On Thursday evening, we saw our longtime friend Andrew Hale perform with Sade at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, in one of the most beautifully conceived and produced concert performances I have ever seen.

Sade is a rare musician, in that she and the band only write, record and tour every eight to ten years, so that in a very real sense you can measure your life by her.

The band's music is always fresh and always newly conceived - for their previous album, Lovers Rock, they stripped everything down musically to a minimalist sound and banished the saxophone that had been so much a part of Sade's heavily soul- and jazz-influenced style.

The latest album, Soldier of Love, released in 2010, is one of the most tender, moving collections of songs yet, from the astonishingly beautiful Morning Bird, which features exquisite keyboards from Andrew, to the soulful, retro, return-of-the-sax melodies of In Another Time, and the deeply touching, reggae-influenced charm of Babyfather - a partic…