Monday, January 19, 2009

What Would MLK Say About LGBT Rights?

Unfortunately, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., whose birthday we honor today, was assassinated before the gay rights movement became a force on the American stage, so we'll never know for sure what he may have done to further the cause of gay and lesbian rights had he lived. The person who knew him best, his wife, Coretta Scott King, was certain, however, that King's legacy was equality for all. To that end, she dedicated much of her time to LGBT equality issues before her death in 2006.

Mrs. King had many friends in the gay community, and a history of tireless activism. Below are some select quotes from her.

“Like Martin, I don’t believe you can stand for freedom for one group of people and deny it to others", she would tell black civil rights leaders angered by gays and lesbians comparing their struggle to their own. She would quote her husband and say, “I have worked too long and hard against segregated public accommodations to end up segregating my moral concern. Justice is indivisible."

"I appeal to everybody who believes in Martin Luther King Jr.’s dream to make room at the table of brother and sisterhood for lesbians and gay people."

"Gay and lesbian people have families, and their families should have legal protection, whether by marriage or civil union. A constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriages is a form of gay bashing and it would do nothing at all to protect traditional marriages."

Dr. King, his wife, and the great civil rights leaders of the past will continue to inspire us, and we honor their legacy and should all seek to "be the change we wish to see." MLK's dream is not over, the fight for equality for racial minorities continues, we must be mindful that all our struggles are connected and we should unite to defeat oppression whether its against homophobia, queerphobia, racism, sexism, or any form of bigotry directed at individuals.

Parts crossposted from Queerty.


MoonRaven said...

I really appreciate your conclusion. "...all our struggles are connected..." Yeah.

Happy MLK day to everyone.

Anonymous said...

Too bad some of his relatives don't understand that.

Anonymous said...

Smart lady. I wish more people would listen.

Anonymous said...

I think he would say:

"Where is Sylvia? Where is Marsha?

Why do you forsake your own?"

hey, you asked...

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