David Alexander Bullock
Host, The People's Show
Founder, Change Agent Consortium
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., remained a man of peace even though he was born into a violent world. He lived a life promoting peace, but died a violent death. He was much more than a dreamer. He was a social change agent. He organized to make peace, economic equality and human dignity more relevant and evident in a world that values money, things and power. He challenged a government and a culture that had little value for the poor and the oppressed. He sought to change a country that killed black and brown people and then claimed immunity behind the dirty white sheet of an allegedly colorblind justice.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., is honored every year. However, he is not honored because he was a perfect man. In fact, he made mistakes. He had character flaws. He struggled with depression. He was great because he was not perfect. It takes courage for an imperfect person to remind all of us that being human means being imperfect. It takes a hero to force us to value each other even when we see faults and failure. He challenged America to value the Negro. He challenged the Negro to value America. He challenged all of us trapped by our addiction to money and power to put people above things.
Theoddeus Gray may not be honored every year. He many not get a hero’s tale told about him. Still, he has much in common with Dr. King. He is another black male killed by the government and devalued by his country. Many will point out character flaws or lapses in judgment as reasons for treating him less than human in life and death. His life and death are chilling reminders that in America we still struggle to find the courage to value human life.
On Monday, January 21, 2019, some will celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., with a breakfast, a lunch, a speech or a dinner. On Monday, January 21, 2019, the family of Theoddeus Gray and concerned citizens will remember Dr. King by holding a demonstration at 2 p.m., in front of the St. Clair Shores Police headquarters located at 27665 Jefferson Ave., St. Clair Shores, MI 48081. We cannot accept the conflicting media reports. We will not let a dog become a hero while a human becomes a monster. We will not simply think of King. We will continue his work of humanizing America.