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  • Read scholarly book #1
  • Read scholarly book #2
  • Catch up on professional journals
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  • Write two final exams
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Monday, January 16, 2006

MLK Day

Today I “celebrated” MLK day by doing an insane amount of course prep and tending to those last few household chores and errands that I could get to before the semester begins and my time is no longer my own.

I did listen to one of my favorite shows on the local NPR affiliate, however, which every year features a fantastic MLK program: the host invites callers to prepare a 1-minute-long reading that they feel does tribute to the values of Dr. King, but written by someone from a race or culture other than their own. And then, for an hour, he takes their calls. It's always amazing. This year people called in with readings from Margaret Cho, Desmond Tutu, and To Kill a Mockingbird. A nine-year-old girl called up and read a passage from Sojourner Truth's Ain't I a Woman. A woman called up and read a poem by a Kenyan poet, crying the whole time. Another woman called up and read part of the Gettysburg Address in memory of her husband, a journalist who was kidnapped and killed in Iraq.

Some of the local churches must have had services this morning, for several still had their doors open and flowers out front when I went out late in the day to do my errands. The only other evidence of commemoration that I saw was a homemade sign strapped to a lamppost on the main thoroughfare of Historically Black Neighborhood: made out of two pieces of cardboard held together with twine, it read, in awkward black marker, "Dr. King. Why did they kill you?" And on the second piece of cardboard, "Like Jesus Christ he died for us."

I don't think there was a parade up there, or any other official ceremony; someone just felt moved to make the sign and do homage in his own way. And as busy as I am, I wanted to spare a minute to try to do the same.


link | posted by La Lecturess at 6:38 PM |


2 Comments:

Blogger RLM commented at 10:01 PM~  

Hear, hear!

Would love to have heard that NPR program. Sounds amazing.

Catching up after a weekend away, so let me add my congrats, congrats, and MORE congrats on your good news! :)

Blogger Professor Bastard commented at 7:35 AM~  

Fantastic vignettes, L.

And 712 congrats to you . . .

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