January 17, 2011
Happy Birthday Dr. King!
I remember being in college writing my first critical essay for Screen-Writing Class. It was a recollection of one of my Granma's many encounters with racism. Being moved writing it did not prepare me...I was too naive to realize that emotive responses would follow once I was chosen to read it in class! That A was a great feeling, but like many artists, I was incredibly shy and to this day, have not read anything I've written aloud, save for a few eulogies.
Thinking about the contents of the piece around MLK day makes me so glad Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. changed the face of America. His dedication to equality for all benefit us in ways that mean so much, and has been monumental to me and my very own family.
My Granma was born in New Orleans, Louisiana in 1918. Her father was a railway chef and rode the "The City of New Orleans". She often returned home after everyone migrated north. Several times she experienced episodes where she needed to move to the back, was refused rest room or food service and often had to sip water from the "Negro" fountain. She was often humiliated and spoken to unkindly.
So today, I honor the man who stood up for her, himself, and for those who did not, and still do not have privilege. The conversation continues, and we must steadfastly remind ourselves to be tolerant, loving, kind and pure toward every breathing being.
Thank you Dr. King ~ I am so very happy you were born.