SPECIAL TO NEWJERSEYNEWSROOM.COM
As we celebrate Martin Luther King Day on Monday, Jan. 19, I can’t help but think about the tumultuous times we seem to find ourselves in lately. We could certainly use his steady hand, implacable courage and profound faith to lead us in meeting these new challenges. They seem to be everywhere, whether it’s an issue of race relations, continued economic inequality or terrorism emanating from some misguided interpretation of religion.
Yet any history about Dr. King’s activities reveals that he too lived through turbulent times. From leading the bus boycott in Montgomery, Alabama, to standing tall during the march to Selma, Alabama, he organized people who had a sense of purpose, a commitment to nonviolence and a willingness to engage in the struggle. Dr. King truly laid the groundwork to, admittedly -- an imperfect society in which we live today, but his impact contributed to a far more progressive world than the one he confronted.
I believe that holidays which celebrate great men, such as Dr. King, offer us a unique moment of reflection and meaning. Don’t treat this upcoming Monday as simply another “day off from work.” Rather, when Martin Luther King Day arrives, I would offer the simplest of suggestions: Make one gesture that adds to the betterment of someone you come in contact with....take the time to roll up your sleeves and get "invested" in your community to make a difference...or simply sit down for five minutes and ask: How can I help someone?