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“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” -Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Right now in Arizona, books that empower young people of color are being pulled from classrooms. In Arizona, any material that documents or speaks about racial and cultural struggle within this country is being banned from schools. This is a total dis of all the struggle, activism, and blood spilt in the many years of all those who have fought for people’s equality.

Dr. King said, “I submit to you that if a man hasn’t discovered something he will die for, he isn’t fit to live.”

This book ban is a part of the patriarchy, the system we live under that promotes some people oppressing other people and the people with power making decisions for the ones under them. Dr. Martin Luther King spoke against systems of oppression. His words were brilliant and should continue to fuel us today for the work that needs to be done toward removing the oppressive system that promotes inequality. Here are some quotes to get you through your activist life. They are gems!

Dr. King’s quotes are in quotations. My comments are not.

“A right delayed is a right denied.”               All people must be afforded the same rights. We can work to make this happen.

“All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence.”                             This work toward justice and a system where all men and women are equal and no one is oppressed is hard, but amazing and world changing.

“A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual doom.”           We must re-organize our priorities.

“All progress is precarious, and the solution of one problem brings us face to face with another problem.”

“Faith is taking the first step, even when you don’t see the whole staircase.”

“It may be true that the law cannot make a man love me, but it can stop him from lynching me, and I think that’s pretty important.”               Hate crime laws must be emphasized and enforced. Education for us all about how we are different and amazing is necessary and should be celebrated. Lack of education or the banning of certain education, like in AZ, encourages hate, violence, and oppression.

“Hatred paralyzes life; love releases it. Hatred confuses life; love harmonizes it. Hatred darkens life; love illuminates it.”                  Beautiful!

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about the things that matter.”

“…the oppressor never voluntarily gives freedom to the oppressed. You have to work for it. Freedom is never given to anybody. Privileged classes never give up their privileges without strong resistance.”

Rest In Peace Dr. King. Celebrate social change and continue to work toward it.

For more information on the legacy of Dr. King, check out the King Center, established in1968 by Coretta Scott King:
For more information on the situation in Arizona: Tucson schools ban books by Chicano and Native American authors: