Wednesday, January 21, 2009

My Country 'Tis of Thee

I have been rooted deeply in thought the last few days. I am in awe of the history that has un-folded before my eyes. I am inspired to thank the lord and to work harder yet to better this life for myself and all men alike.

I want to tie my thoughts together for you but also for myself, as a recording of a moment I will never forget!

Monday we celebrated the birthday of one of my heroes.
A man that transformed the landscape of this nation! “Through words he gave voice to the voiceless. Through deeds he gave courage to the faint of heart. By dint of vision, and determination, and most of all faith in the redeeming power of love, he endured the humiliation of arrest, the loneliness of a prison cell, the constant threats to his life, until he finally inspired a nation to transform itself, and begin to live up to the meaning of its creed.

Like Moses before him, he would never live to see the Promised Land. But from the mountain top, he pointed the way for us - a land no longer torn asunder with racial hatred and ethnic strife, a land that measured itself by how it treats the least of these, a land in which strength is defined not simply by the capacity to wage war but by the determination to forge peace - a land in which all of God's children might come together in a spirit of brotherhood”.

Yesterday was the Inauguration of President Barack Obama. I watched in silence and shed a few tears as the profound meaning started to set in. For so many, myself included, this event is the end of an era of intolerance and hate, the culmination of a movement to change the world and free a people. Many found themselves walking the same steps that Dr. King walked 40+ years ago. They found themselves gathered in the shadow of the great emancipator Abraham Lincoln and realized that their ancestors blood was not shed in vain.

On the steps of that memorial Dr. King spoke these words: “I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: 'We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal… I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character… This will be the day, this will be the day when all of God's children will be able to sing with new meaning 'My country 'tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing. Land where my father's died, land of the Pilgrim's pride, from every mountainside, let freedom ring!”

Just minutes after his swearing in took place our new President spoke these words:
“On this day, we gather because we have chosen hope over fear, unity of purpose over conflict and discord.
On this day, we come to proclaim an end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn out dogmas, that for far too long have strangled our politics.
The time has come to set aside childish things. The time has come to reaffirm our enduring spirit; to choose our better history; to carry forward that precious gift, that noble idea, passed on from generation to generation: the God-given promise that all are equal, all are free, and all deserve a chance to pursue their full measure of happiness”.

I wish my words could be as profoundly moving and inspiring as those of both these great men, these Heroes of mine. But simply put I am grateful to be part of this time, I am grateful to see us all usher in a new era of change and most of all to see a world that has finally crested the mountain of racial intolerance and hate. What a blessing it is to be alive to see this, what a blessing for my little sisters who have the world laid out at their feet and now see that Yes they can be anything they desire to be and that the color of their skin will no longer limit their opportunities.

1 comment:

jewels said...

You are very good with words. That was a very touching blog. I too cried as I watched it on T.V. It is so nice that if we all unite we can make things change.