Friday, April 3, 2009
It's hard to believe that today marks 41 years since Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated. He was the youngest person (age 35) ever awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. That year - 1968 - was a year of unrest and unbelievable events. Not only was Dr. King murdered but also Robert F. Kennedy - right here in Los Angeles at the Ambassador Hotel. Powerful voices silenced by hate and prejudice. I remember that day and I remember them. (I lived in Atlanta during the time Dr. King lived and preached there. And I lived in Los Angeles and worked on a film project at the Ambassador hotel after it was turned into a production house for film projects. I was working there when the LA Riots broke out and watched from the roof as our city burned all around the hotel and beyond.)
Each leader spoke out with their truth even when voices tried to silence them. As I reflect on this historic sad and shameful day in our history, I ask myself questions. What lessons can I learn from these brave men to practice in my own life? How do I silence myself when I think my voice will speak a different point of view? How am I a light in the world by being of service to others? Do I allow my creative voice to speak or do I censor myself because it is not the voice I hear others speak? Do I speak out when I see injustice in the world, my country, my community or do I think that someone else will do it for me? And I wonder what our world would be like today if these voices had not been silenced?