Leaping from Our Spheres
January 15th is the actual birthday of Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., officially celebrated the third Monday of January in many communities and congregations in a variety of ways: some focusing on his legacy of work in securing civil rights for African Americans; others on his nonviolent approach to acts of disobedience; others on his opposition to unjust war, or his later life interest in economic justice issues. King was preparing for a Poor People’s March on Washington DC when he was gunned down in Memphis, the site of a sanitation worker’s march for better pay and other labor issues.
There was some critique during his living years of the lack of visible (or acknowledged) leadership of women in these initiatives. The particular concerns of women around human rights have been viewed as being overlooked then, and not particularly the focus of observances honoring his legacy in the years that have followed.
Not so in 2014.
A recent family visit to the National Archives in Washington DC included our first time seeing the new more expansive and nuanced permanent exhibit displaying the “Records of Rights”, highlighting the parallel and intersecting civil rights struggles of African Americans, women, and immigrants. Continue reading