At the Intersection: The least valued people in society are again the ones working hardest for the humanity of all of us.
Martin Luther King Jr.
This week, our nation celebrated Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Coupled with the president's State of the Union address, this week provides ample opportunity to reflect on our struggle for civil rights, social justice and equality under the law in the United States of America.
I want to thank the demonstrators -- in Ferguson, Mo., New York, and nationwide -- for exposing a deep problem of justice that has plagued our nation for too long. For years, I had heard stories of police misconduct in African-American communities, and I believed them. But nothing brought home the gravity of the problem like these protests. To those who have marched for months: Thank you!
Commentary: Today, it wouldn't be Gandhi's notions, but an advanced form of nonviolent conflict burnished by the experience of hundreds of social movements in Gandhi's wake.
Mention the concept of "nonviolent resistance" and two names immediately come to mind: Mahatma Gandhi, the Indian leader who led his nation to independence from British colonial rule, and Martin Luther King Jr., who led the struggle for civil rights in America. Tragically, both champions of nonviolence were assassinated: Gandhi in 1948 and King 20 years later. Today many people throughout the world revere both advocates of nonviolence.
The violence continues to pile up, with one searing headline rapidly succeeding the next: Gaza; Ferguson, Mo.; Ukraine; the horrifying rampage of the Islamic State militant group; and now, a long-term U.S. war to destroy our new enemy. This dizzying, violent surge, one bloody wave after the next, gives us no time to think. Violence is the answer, we're told, so get with the program.
A small c catholic: It's necessary for blacks and whites to understand one another when it comes to bigotry, economic injustice, and what gets called "white privilege."
Simply Spirit: It seems just yesterday that everybody in the gay community was either in the closet, dying of AIDS, or both. We've come a long way.
Opinion: A clear mark of Christian solidarity is the practice of hearing the cry of the poor and making their cries for dignity, love, justice and freedom our own.
I want to consider three things in this blog: first, the harm that has been done; second, our white gaze; and third, nonviolent direct action.