“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” Martin Luther King, Jr.
Seeking some words to grasp after the terrible violence of the week in Dallas, MN, and Baton Rouge; this MLK quote was the first that came to mind.
While investigations need to follow to know the details of the most recent shootings, there is clearly a pattern of black men dying at the hands of police that is cause for anger. Yet most police serve and risk their lives to keep us all safe; and it is incredibly sad to lose officers who were helping to uphold the right to protest injustice.
I pray for the families of all those who have lost loved ones due to this violence. I pray that we as a nation can somehow draw resolve from this violence to work for a more just and safe nation. And rather than waiting for one big answer or change that will solve this, may we all find ways in our everyday lives to create more understanding, to take what steps we can to bring about change and contribute to a more just society–which could simply mean we all have equal opportunity, regardless of skin color, to pursue life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
I share these thoughts and concerns from a position of privilege. Not the least of these privileges is the ability to feel confident that the police are here to protect me, that I need not fear for my life at a traffic stop.
There is also the privilege of having simple things I can dive into and enjoy and forget for a time all the violence and injustice we see in our world. Cooking a good meal to enjoy with family, I get caught up in the act and forget the good fortune to have regular access to good healthy food. The joy of watching our boys play a big baseball game, oblivious to all else in the world other than the next pitch.
Yes, I will jump into the joys of cooking, baseball and family over the weekend. Yet there will be a heaviness underneath, percolating concern for that state of our world, with an eye to things I might do to help bring about what King referred to as the Beloved Community.