Reflecting on MLK’s legacy
Today is, in many ways, the most important of our nation’s cherished holidays.
Martin Luther King Jr. Day represents who we aspire to be rather than simply celebrating who we are or what we’ve been. On this day, we celebrate Dr. King’s legacy — the values of freedom, liberty, and justice for all.
Dr. King’s legacy is one of love. Through his life, he showed us all by his example how, even in our darkest of days, we can choose love.
His example has inspired me from a very young age, where I personally experienced that I was happiest when serving God, working for the wellbeing of others and the planet. It’s what has motivated me throughout my life, serving in public office, and serving our nation in uniform.
Today I stood at the state house in Columbia, South Carolina to honor Dr. King’s legacy, remember Ms. Septima Clark of Charlestown who Dr. King called the “Mother of the Movement”, and to reflect on today’s importance to our nation, to all its people, to me:
Watch full speech from today's MLK Day event organized by the South Carolina Conference of the NAACP
Ultimately, the legacy of Dr. King is one of peace and freedom. He understood that the road to peace, freedom, and justice requires that we stand up to violence, injustice and fear without doing greater violence, inflicting greater injustice or instilling greater fear. He understood that if we are serious about being a force for good in the world, a force for God’s love, we must proceed from a place of love for all of God’s children.
Dr. King opposed the Vietnam War, because he saw the connection between the fact that our government spent “$35 billion a year” to fight in Vietnam, but would not spend “$44 million to get rid of the rats” in impoverished American communities.
Today, our leaders waste trillions of dollars on the new cold war and wasteful regime change wars that haven’t made us any safer, and then they tell us we can’t afford healthcare and education.
As president, it is my personal commitment to you that I will uphold Dr. King’s legacy by taking the trillions of dollars we are now wasting to enact death and destruction, and investing it in the cause of life and renewal here in the United States of America.
I hope you will stand with me.