Martin Luther King Day – Do More than Observe It
Martin Luther King Day is observed on Monday January 20, 2020. Wikipedia explains this day as follows: “King was the chief spokesperson for nonviolent activism in the Civil Rights Movement, which successfully protested racial discrimination in federal and state law. The campaign for a federal holiday in King’s honor began soon after his assassination in 1968. President Ronald Reagan signed the holiday into law in 1983, and it was first observed three years later. At first, some states resisted observing the holiday as such, giving it alternative names or combining it with other holidays. It was officially observed in all 50 states for the first time in 2000.”
What does it mean to “observe?” One definition from Miriam Webster is: “to take notice.” Is taking notice of Martin Luther King Day really enough? We live in a time when houses of worship of seemingly every faith have been shot up or blown up. Intolerance and hate seem to have grown, not withered. Perhaps it is time for each of us to do more than observe, as in take notice, of Martin Luther King Day. Perhaps it is time to start acting on his principals. Perhaps it’s time to start LIVING the principles for which Dr. King lived for, and not merely observing them.
Martin Luther King Jr. in his book, Where Do We Go from Here? Chaos or Community stated: “We have inherited a large house…a great “World House” in which we have to live together–black and white, Easterner and Westerner, Gentile and Jew, Catholic and Protestant, Muslim and Hindu…a family separated by ideas, culture, and interest who… must learn somehow to live with each other in peace.”
The current and disturbing state of our World House was described in a recent email from Tanenbaum, an organization devoted to combatting religious prejudice: “The targeting of people at church and during family religious celebrations are not random incidents. They’re the product of a culture that is fueling bias, bigotry, hatred—and violence. The hate doesn’t discriminate. And it doesn’t show up only against Christians and Jews. It also targets Muslims, immigrants, people of color and far too many others. We won’t—and none of us should—look the other way…” By LIVING the principals Dr. King advocated for, we can each make a difference.
Stephen R. Covey, in his book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People expounds on Habit 5: “Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood.” Perhaps that is one way we can all learn how to live together in the great “World House” Dr. King described. Perhaps one way we can work to eliminate religious prejudice is, as Stephen Covey describes, first understand. Let’s understand each other’s faiths, cultures, and lifestyles.
Below are links to an ongoing series of webinars on religion and estate planning. More are planned. If there is faith, culture or interest that has not been represented let’s create one together to add to the list. Let’s work together to understand each other. Let’s work together to live the principles Dr. King spoke about. Watching a webinar about another faith might be an infinitesimally small step. But we have to take steps together to improve the World House we are living in. We must seek first to understand if we are going to learn somehow to live with each other in peace.
Recordings Available Now on Shenkman Law:
General Religion and Estate Planning: View the Webinar here
Christian Estate Planning: View the Webinar here
Catholic Estate Planning: View the Webinar here
Muslim Estate Planning: View the Webinar here
Scientology Estate Planning: View the Webinar here
Jewish Estate Planning: View the Webinar here
Latter Day Saints Estate Planning
We need help with:
Hindu Estate Planning
Buddhist Estate Planning
Baha’i Estate Planning
►Please email us if you can help us add to the above list of webinars by covering additional faiths, cultures, and people.
►If you would like original PowerPoints or other materials from any of the above programs to present in your community to build awareness just email firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll share whatever material we have.
► If you would like to collaborate on turning the above materials into articles to publish and disseminate this information, let us know.
►Resolve in the New Year to find a way you can help make a difference.
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