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Martin Luther King, Jr.: His passion made him voice of oppressed

An Adair County High Student searches for the source of the greatness Martin Luther King, Jr. and finds surprising answers to why this man, a nobody just like the rest of us, a man born with the same amount of courage we all have, but, she says, followed his dream, the advice of Dr. King. When your cause appears, do not wait for someone with 'more courage,' to change the tide. Find your voice. Let freedom ring from the curvaceous slopes of California all the way to Stone Mountain in Georgia. Let freedom ring,resounds in this remarkable essay, by a remarkable rising Adair Countian, about this most remarkable American hero.

By Heather Jackson

I am nobody. I am skin, I am eyes, I am bones, but I am nobody. Don't consider me grim. For I think you are nobody too. We are all just forms and figures that move about our daily lives with the occasional glimpse at the idea of being "somebody."

The name Martin Luther King Jr. is a powerful symbol for equality and liberation. Surely, Dr. King was somebody. He maintains international fame and a legacy that immortalizes him, oh yes, surely you believe Dr. King was somebody. Alas, the epitome of the inspiration behind civil disobedience was a nobody.

Dr. King once said, "If a man hasn't discovered something that he will die for, he isn't fit to live." It seems rather radical, don't you think? Must we all be martyrs for a cause?

One man standing alone does not cause change. King would have never found success if people did not believe in the cause. His passion made him the voice of the oppressed. So even as a nobody, Dr. King utilized his voice for change. The quote from Martin Luther King Jr. encourages people to find their voice. King inspired a change because he was saying what everyone else lacked the courage to.

We may all have individualistic thoughts, but those change. Once, many people believed an African American man should stay in the cotton fields. Today, the American people have sent him to the White House. Our thoughts have changed. Dr. King believed the denial of equal rights was a violation of his own moral code, so he stood to change thoughts.

One must remember that Martin Luther King Jr. was a man, a nobody. He didn't posses extraordinary powers that made him invincible against the spray of the fire hoses in Birmingham or the fatal gun shot in Memphis. So if this great man was just a man, a nobody, why honor him?

Many say Dr. King had more courage than the average man, but that isn't true. We all have the same amount of courage embedded within. It is how much we believe in ourselves that helps us to utilize that courage. Dr. King believed that any man without belief in himself and his cause was a man who wasn't "fit to live". We are not all called to be martyrs, but we can all speak out against something we don't feel is just. Dr. King's wish for mankind is simple: Do not become complacent. If you believe in something, don't wait for another Martin Luther King Jr. to start the movement. Find courage within yourself.

To every nobody who ever shielded their eyes from an injustice, to every nobody who ever sat back and watched the world turn, follow the advice of Dr. King. When your cause appears, do not wait for someone with "more courage" to change the tide. Find your voice. Let freedom ring from the curvaceous slopes of California all the way to Stone Mountain in Georgia. Let freedom ring. - Heather Jackson

This story was posted on 2012-01-18 08:18:00
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