This Martin Luther King Jr. design is a little edgier than many of my MLK designs. However, in meditating upon our upcoming local MLK celebrations in Toledo, Ohio, I recognize that the profound edginess of MLK’s body of work for peace and justice is often turned into some kind of namby-pamby niceness and abstraction of pure intentions. Of course, this overlooks the hard-core and often very unpopular work that MLK conducted. I was extremely disappointed, as were so many others, when President Obama gave his acceptance speech for the Nobel Peace Prize. While Mr. Obama typically finely targets his fine rhetoric to his audience, his speech to the largely pacifist aficionados of the Nobel Peace Prize was nothing less than crude apologetics for violence. Unfortunately, Mr. Obama’s rhetoric has been fully incarnated into deadly policy with his escalation of killer drones initiated by Pres. George W. Bush.
I plan on passing out free buttons to participants of our local MLK celebration. I expect that many people will be a little reluctant at the harsh juxtaposition of Martin Luther King Jr. and his idealistic and famous “I have a dream speech” with President Obama’s droning on with killer strikes, raining death on mostly civilians and often children. Mr. Obama’s killer drone strikes is perhaps this millennium’s best example (so far) of a blatant violation of international law and national sovereignty.
The timely and timeless question: what would MLK do? Is appropriate especially for MLK Day, and every day in 2013. What say you?