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Task Force commemorates life and legacy of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

January 16, 2012

Today is the federal holiday honoring the life and legacy of civil rights leader the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Statement by Rea Carey, executive director, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force:

Today we honor and reflect on the life of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., whose moral courage, unbending resilience and vision of an America that values equality over injustice continue to inspire people everywhere.

Dr. King knew that fairness was not a privilege of power and race, but rather a right of humanity. With grace, grit and calm determination, he challenged an unjust status quo and championed efforts to dismantle a system that had been purposely constructed to leave racial minorities and the economically disadvantaged in the margins.

Dr. King’s life and message of hope continue to resonate with people fighting injustice around the world. This holds true for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people and their families, who face pervasive discrimination and abuse in many places and in many ways, including here in the United States. We know what it is like to be systemically shoved to the side, to have our love and our relationships outlawed, to be treated as ‘lesser than.’

And, like Dr. King, we are saying ‘no’ to injustice, and ‘yes’ to our common humanity. This is part of his enduring legacy, and of a life that will forever be a beacon of inspiration.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Liz Mariani permalink
    January 16, 2012 9:07 am

    This is a very important holiday and more so, a very important legacy to promote a sustainable way of life. This is also an important day for LGBT allies for standing by us, in action and word. This is my favorite speech of MLK. He gave it a year before he was shot.

    http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/mlkatimetobreaksilence.htm

    In his honor, I think it is important that the LGBT community (myself included) practice introspection purposefully evaluating the marginalization within our greater community with special attention towards those who live in a socially or politically phobic places and cannot leave, towards those have less economic power, towards those who are just coming out, and whom identify as trans and/or bi. We have to do more than just say ‘no’ to injustice. We have to lead by example. I, for one, am still learning. Happy MLK Day.

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