Invoking MLK in Today's Struggle for Racial Justice

Invoking MLK Today

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is revered by most Christians in today’ s society. However, during the Civil Rights movement many from the Christian tradition did not agree with his push for Civil Rights–action oriented love, nor his non violent direct action approach.  In comparison to his contemporaries, Dr. King’s message and tactics have become revered in the 21st Century.  So much so, that MLK’s words have often been used to chastise the leadership and tactics of the present #BlackLivesMatter movement.  But have we been mislead? If MLK were alive today, might the tactics and push for social justice embodied by BLM coincide with Dr. King’s longing for the “Beloved Community”? We discuss how the legacy of MLK can be appropriately applied today without sacrificing either his revolutionary spirit or his emphasis on nonviolence. We’ll touch on Black Lives Matter, as well as other issues with the current state of racial relations and today’s struggle for racial justice.

Sociologist Deshonna Collier-Goubil has dedicated her scholarship to a holistic understanding of the American criminal justice system. She seeks to encourage students to engage with the ethical issues involved with incarceration and the death penalty, especially for minority cases. Today, she helps us understand how to think through the legacy of MLK responsibly.