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Sunday, August 27, 2017

A legacy of love informs teachers, to not speak against hatred is to act for hate

 Pastor Dietrich gave his all to stand against hate in Germany
Dr. King gave his all standing against hate in America

My teachers, are asking how do we deal with this hatred showing its face in America? Sadly, hatred in America not new. What is always new? Is our individual opportunities to stand against it. Please, don't waste this moment to speak up, stand up, and act against hatred and racism?

German Pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer, highly respected theologian and Anti-Nazi dissident returned from the safety of studying in America to Germany to speak out against Hitler's Nazi Germany.  He did this when everyone opposed to Hitler was trying to get out. He was an outspoken member of the clergy in Germany during that time when many others remained silent. He would eventually be arrested, and executed by SS in April 1945 just weeks before American and Russian troops would liberate Berlin. He left us, a legacy of love that defines morality in the face of evil. He said: “Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.”
Pastor Bonhoeffer legacy informs us, when we do not speak against hatred we act for hatred. History informs us, hatred and racism is not new in the Americas. We carried it with us on those first ships across the Atlantic from the old world to the new world.
Every slave grave marks us. It's embedded it into the very fabric of our nation's constitution, in the Three Fifths of Clause that labels Black slaves as property. There is an 500 year old legacy of hate here. I say meet it, with what our Quaker brothers and sisters called their oath "Speak Power to Truth".  To not speak truth is to act for a lie. 

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said: “Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that.” 

So, teachers, we must speak, we must act, but let us do it with the dignity and the love of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

We have no pictures of an angry Dr. King.
We have no recordings of Dr. King screaming in anger.
We have no recordings of Dr. King calling anyone names, or slurs.
He preached with the moral vigor of a saint.
More than any other American, he represents our nation's moral compass of love, dignity, and grace. 
His activism was so full of dignity and love, that I often think his living was as close to Jesus as any human being has ever come.
Please teachers speak against hate,
Please teachers speak for love,
To not to speak against hate, is to act for hate.
After Heather Hayer's murder in Charlottesville, our children need teachers of moral action more than ever. 
But speak, with the dignity, love, and grace of Dr. King, and the fearlessness of Pastor Bonhoeffer. 
Their shoes are too big for me, but with God's grace maybe someday I might grow in them just a little.
Silence and apathy are not acceptable,
Jesse The Walking Man Turner

--> If you like to listen to the song comforting my heart through the hate on my walk today. It's Northern Ireland's Omagh Community Youth Choir singing "Love rescue me"  

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