Toward Democracy and Freedom
Toward Democracy and Freedom

DAY 3: Envisioning the Racial Justice Work We Need to do Today

The Civil Rights victory 50 years ago was a great step forward toward equal rights. It was not the end of the struggle to create a truly equitable society in which all people are in fact treated as equal. With this victory civil rights were extended to many who had not enjoyed them before, and enjoyment of those rights was protected by law, but the Civil Rights Act of 1964 could not, on its own, undo the spirit that animates discrimination. 50 years later, we still live in an age where the color of one's skin, one's religion, ability, gender or sexual orientation is cause for discrimination. Thanks to the work and sacrifice of countless people in many cases the discrimination is now illegal, but even when it is illegal it happens; even if not illegal when it happens it should not.

The spirit of discrimination still lives in this country, and there are those who work to roll back the legal protections won through a generation of struggle. We must therefore rededicate ourselves to ending discrimination not only in name but in spirit.

When Dr. Martin Luther King called people to Selma to march on Montgomery, Unitarian Universalists witnessed at the front of the movement to create a more just and fair society. On this day of remembering Dr. Martin Luther King's vision of justice and fairness for everyone and his ability to rally so many of us to this cause through peaceful and non-violent means, let us rededicate ourselves to not only undo discriminatory laws and policies, but to change the spirit behind them.

  Activities: Watch the video of I Have Been to the Mountaintop speech. Watch the video of the I Have a Dream speech. Read the UU Metro NY District realized a statement on the future of democracy in our country and the role of Unitarian Universalism. Be The Change! Project – Check out the UUA’s new opportunities for youth to engage with multiculturalism and antiracism. The Be The Change! Project includes an interactive, multimedia six-session training and related resources for entry-level discussions around race in our faith and our communities.  

About the Author

  • Ted joined the staff of the Office of Youth and Young Adult Ministries in February 2010. He brings more than twenty-five years of experience using media to create social change by creating communications strategies and content for progressive non-profits, political campaigns, and cause based...

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