Martin Luther King Jr: 1963 Dream vs. 2017 Narrative

Today the United States celebrates Martin Luther King Jr, who, 54 years ago, boldly marched for jobs and Freedom for a whole segment of our society that was unrighteously being denied.  He famously marched in Washington D.C. and marched from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama.

His message was for “Love and Optimism” over “Hatred and fear”.

He spoke of the glory of the Lord, a God who loves all His creation, rising to flatten every hill, over-coming basically evil opposition looking to oppress God’s people.

He optimistically proclaimed the day will come we can all walk hand in hand, Free at last.

I am prompted to write something I saw as a headline on DrudgeReport.com today:

Another headline reads “Reporters beg MLK III to attack Donald Trump.” The embedded MSNBC Video MLK III’s last answer to what his father would’ve said to Trump: “I think my father would be very concerned about the fact there are 50 to 60 Million people living in poverty, and somehow we have to create the climate for all boats to be lifted”, referring to “A rising tide lifts all boats” analogy (or amorphism as it is labeled on Wikipedia.)

2017 Narrative: Things have improved, we have a long way to go

A.K.A. “Hatred and Fear

Headlines from the previous section the do not fit the mainstream media, pundit, Politico-agenda advancing narrative.

The camera lens and written word shape a narrative on TV or the internet. A small or non-problem is misrepresented, exaggerated/exacerbated in a public plane as if it were the rule, not the exception.  The result is the more corrosive and negative direction that negates healing and positive movement.

They claim Martin Luther King as their hero, yet his descendant’s/extended family’s own words run counter to the narrative. Aveda was direct, to the point where-as MLK III was clear, but careful.  Media-types don’t pause and reflect on this, they march forward with such headlines/statements “African Americans and Donald Trump have a tenuous relationship.”

See Sunday’s Washington Post,  ABC News website, and NBC News reporting Lewis vs. Trump confrontation before MLK Day – it disregards the fact congressman Lewis picked this fight, causing the controversy.

NBC has a reputation for propagating #FakeNews: e.g. Exploding GM Truck Gas tanks; editing the George Zimmerman 9-1-1 call about Trayvon Martin; anchor Brian Williams lying about his war-zone experiences.

Substitute “… and Donald Trump” in the above …

  • … and Police
  • … and non-minority people (generically White people)
  • … and {conservative/Republican} Government (Democrats get a pass)
  • … and Donald Trump, Mitt Romney, George Bush  

They (media, et al) treat a whole segment of society as monolithic, subject to group-think (a stereo-type itself.)  The result, good or bad, is not the concern.  It’s about promoting chaos and tumult.

Media, The 24 Hour News Cycle, gives us Hatred and Anger

The famous news term “If it bleeds, it leads” says give the sensational to attract an audience.  Fit this into the 24 hour news cycle debate/monologue and the result is amped up emotions, bad feelings, anger (both sides of the political aisle.)  Find those few people unhappy about an event or outcome, then magnify feelings, words, cause controversy for the sake of ratings, affirming philosophical leanings, or both.  This fuels the reactive feelings of the viewers translating to society, seen in recent events:

The media ideals get planted and enforced in our education system (also owned also by the left) where you have Cultural/Social Studies of various kinds, or slanted history courses known to concentrate on the perceived bad, aggrieved, negative, then blaming the bogey-man white person/law-enforcement/conservative … anything that is not politically-correct enough.  You disagree with them, they (the Left) demonize you.

  • Nullify Dreams and hope, replace by grievance.
  • Depraved man’s (ancestors of Adam) darkened hearts cling to darkness and incubates it
  • The dark grievance is acted out upon in a most eggregious manner
    • see the 4 episodes I named above as examples.

The cycle is to create a “Straw-man” and knock him down, intending to leave the hearer 1) believing the Fake-Straw-Man exists, 2)demonstrate how StrawMan succumbs to the presented arguments/reasoning 3) then causing the hearer to stereo-type the intended target, and despise them in heart at the worst.

It is not a light at the end of the tunnel, its a self perpetuating, self feeding seething with no hope. Just a continual descending darkness.

1963 Dream: There is a Problem, “I have a Dream”

A.K.A. “Love and Optimism

How does this grievance finding line up with what MLK said in his “I have a Dream Speech“?

Please take the 10 minutes to read  MLK Jr’s I have a Dream Speech  or  watch it on YouTube.com (17 Minutes).  Seriously, Read or watch.  #ChillBumps. #GoodStuff.

He speaks of the “negro revolt” but rounded it off with the last line of this clip:  “Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred.” The rest of the speech speaks of day where, by his very words, the sunshine feels warm on the soul. The dark storm clouds are rolled away revealing a clear-blue sky.

mlk-1mlk-2

He had a dream “rooted in the  American Dream … ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal,” not just believing but boldly proclaiming that included “his people” as well.

mlk-3

He had a dream where his children would live in a nation where they will be judged by the content of their character, and not the color of their skin.  And little white and black children can join hand in hand as brothers and sisters. #Amen

mlk-4

And it is in faith he desired to see the glory of the Lord revealed to all flesh, transforming the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood, to pray together, to struggle together, go to jail together and stand up for freedom together.

mlk-5

And that famous line that resounds still today: “Free at last, Free at last, Great God a-mighty, We are free at last.”

mlk-6-free-at-last

This is a positive message of hope, filled with a destination.  He calls for righteous-revolt, tempered with peace and having a trusting faith in God – which I argue is the cornerstone of his motivation.

MLK Jr. by his words and confidence removed the clouds of a self-feeding darkness and pointed to a destination with an obtainable end.  The grievance-peddlers do not have an endpoint.  Its just a ray that continually points downward with no end in sight.

Today: Hopeless Humanism

Today we are told in various medium we need more “Education”, “Information”,  “Understanding.” We’ve kicked God’s call for “Grace” and “Forgiveness” to the curb, out of the public and ultimately private areas of life, relying more on man-centered solutions. All that remains is a constant reminder that there is a wrong and it can never be covered or paid.

Alveda King calls for “Agape Love” – in New Testament Greek this is “Godly love:, treating each other as God (Jesus) would have us treat each other: bearing with each others burdens, forgiving just as our Heavenly Father is ready to forgive us.

1st Corinthians 13 tells us about Agape Love:

Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful;[b] it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Love never ends. … 1So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.

Humanism ultimately transposes verses 4-7 into what our society is today:  Impatient, unkind, envying, boastful, arrogant, rude, insisting on our own way, resentful, and yes – rejoicing at wrong doing to those with whom I have a grievance. Reject the truth if it doesn’t support my narrative, bear with nothing (snowflake,) believe nothing (turmoil/contradiction), which ultimately descends into hopelessness.

The Dreams Doctor King spelled out in 1963 has been realized in a great many ways, in great fashion, but it has been destroyed by our society and culture abandoning its roots in God Himself and his word, relying more and more on secular and humanistic solutions which do not resolve anything. Out of this has grown a narrative of grievance for sin that can never be paid.  Apart from knowing Grace, Mercy and Forgiveness towards each other, it never will be.

When God calls us to overlook an offense, it is often to cover our own misconceptions or wrong feelings – considering others more significant than ourselves.

Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.

While we can always dream, this Hope will be realized one day when Jesus returns and establishes his kingdom here on Earth. From what I read of Martin Luther King Jr. he had/has the same hope and I look forward to chatting with him about it in Eternal Glory.

Saving his Legacy: Obama’s Farewell

Tonight Barak Obama gave a farewell speech.  It is amazing how full the Chicago auditorium was as I watched.

I mentally contrasted this with the Hillary crowds.  They didn’t even compare. If she had Obama’s draw, she very well could have been president.

If Bernie Sanders were allowed to compete fairly in the Democrat Primaries, I almost think we would be saying President Elect Bernie Sanders instead of Trump.  He could have easily ridden Obama’s popularity coat-tails into office.

As the President spoke, he spoke in a way that was intended to rescue his program legacy.  As many commentators have noted, when Obama is on the ticket, he wins.  When his policies (minus his good looks) are on the ballot, he loses.  His policies stand as his legacy – which doesn’t look so hot right now.

Before I go down my list I will say, I see the light at the end of every tunnel. I see the silver lining behind every cloud.  I will start on the positive:

The most calming thing I’ve ever heard Obama say was what he said tonight: he affirmed our peaceful transition just days away.

One of my all-time favorite things is seeing him affirm his wife Michelle and his commitment to his marriage. Nothing is more important in our culture today than a Dad and Husband showing love to his wife and kids.  That is a seriously beautiful thing, and I was touched as I watched that.

 There are a great many in the unwashed minority American population that took heart they can succeed in this country if they didn’t believe it before.  America is truly a place where we are willing to all work together seeing people as people, not as categories.  I content Obama played more to the “You are oppressed”, cup half-empty side of the American psyche than he did the cup-half-full, optimistic side and I think that has had a negative effect in the view of folks and contributed to the chaos we see in the country today.

After 8 years of Obama’s policies though, I see no Hope in the Change he brought about.  I am more optimistic for the changes (reverting back hopefully) to come as 2017 progresses.  But we’ll see.

In his farewell address, President Obama reminded us of what he thought were his successes: Iran Nuke deal, opening Cuba relations, the auto bailout, the longest employment growth spurt in our history (!!!???) and of course his crowing achievement, Obamacare.  He called out a post-racial America where he says things have greatly improved, “No matter what some folks might say.”

The truth in these is still obvious despite his enthusiastic delivery:

  • Iran is the state sponsor of terror and we just injected them with a healthy infusion of cash to modernize
  • Cuba is still run by an oppressive Communist regime, also infused with much needed cash
  • The auto-bailout, while nice on the face (and bluntly providing me with great employment) came at a large cost to where certain stock and bond holders took an unrighteous loss of their money and their gains
  • Each month Obama’s BLS (Bureau of Labor Statistics) reported jobs numbers, they gave a rosy picture on Fridays, then adjusted those numbers down the following week without any press fanfare
    • The total universe of jobs in the US continued to shrink
    • The U3 Unemployment numbers (90 days Unemployed) saw people shift to the U6 category (long term unemployed) which were not counted against the universe of jobs – giving us a fake unemployment number of 5% or lower
    • 99 million people are out of work today – that is approximately 1/3 of our entire population.  Gallup says the Unemployment rate is about 9.x% and I’ve seen it reported higher in other places.
  • President Obama promised better priced, better quality, more accessible health care. If you like your doctor, you can keep him.
    • Obamacare has caused premiums to increase 116% here in Arizona alone, many insurers and doctors have opted out of the Affordable Care Act due to onerous regulations, rules and costs – making the promised reality unrealized, as predicted in 2010 before it’s passage.
  • The racial divide in the US is more sharply pronounced than I’ve ever seen it in my lifetime. Rhetoric from the top of our country’s leadership dictates much direction.  Obama’s words and actions have sadly served to stoke the fires and divide, not heal the divides that existed.

Obama’s legacy is spotty at best.  Of course he will not point to the disastrous failure of the Fast and Furious program – delivering US weapons to Mexican drug Lords in the hope they would commit crimes in the United States with them to create outcry against the 2nd Ammendment.

He definitely won’t point to that disaster in Benghazi, Libya. Hillary’s fingerprints are all over taking out Muammar Gaddafi – leading to Libya becoming a failed state incubating ISIS – out of which reports have come the US used it to run guns to Syria, thus arming ISIS with US weapons.

Of all the things, I think Benghazi, at least to me personally, is the most heart-breaking. Have you seen the movie 13 hours?

He departs office after causing no small amount of turmoil by putting his finger in the eye of Israel at the UN, blaming the Russians for purposely swaying the election towards Trump, undermining the incoming Administration through his words and promising to speak out after leaving office – unlike past presidencies — all of this among other things.  Obama’s departure is fitting for the state he has left this country – in tumult.

Self-Esteem and Pride: Problem of our Age

Reading this entry from John MacArthur on GTY.org (Grace To You) blogs: The Humility of Love.  Self-Esteem bolsters Pride (the archetype sin of the Universe — see verses quoted below.)

God will oppose the proud, but yet it has entered into the church and become part of its fabric.  John MacArthur addresses this.

Speaking of Lucifer:

17 Your heart was proud because of your beauty;

you corrupted your wisdom for the sake of your splendor.

I cast you to the ground;

 The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (Eze 28:17). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.
  • The above quote comes from an Old Testament passage providing insight into the fall of Satan

 

“God Opposes the Proud”

Likewise, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”

 The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (1 Pe 5:5). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.
  • The Greek word definition is as follows:
    • 530 ἀντιτάσσομαι (antitassomai), ἀντιτάσσω (antitassō): vb.; ≡ Str 498—LN 39.1 be hostile toward, oppose, resist, rebel (Ac 18:6; Ro 13:2; Jas 4:6; 5:6; 1Pe 5:5+)
      Swanson, J. (1997). Dictionary of Biblical Languages with Semantic Domains: Greek (New Testament) (electronic ed.). Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, Inc.
  • The word picture given once in a message I heard was that of a warrior with his Sword Drawn back, eyes slitted and intently focused on the target ready to strike.

 

Pride Leads to Destruction

 

18 Pride goes before destruction,

and a haughty spirit before a fall.

19 It is better to be of a lowly spirit with the poor

than to divide the spoil with the proud.

 The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (Pr 16:18–19). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.

 

  • Psalms giving wisdom to the outcome of pride: destruction and a fall.

 

Whoever will be greatest in God’s Kingdom will be a servant of all

11 The greatest among you shall be your servant. 12 Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.

The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (Mt 23:11–12). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.
  • Jesus here describing to his disciples who is the greatest in God’s economy