Wednesday, August 28, 2013

50 Years Later---MLK'S Dream From My World

WHEN MLK GAVE HIS FAMOUS SPEECH 50 years ago, I was a freshman at Vanderbilt University. It was an exciting, heady time to be alive and almost-grown-up---especially in the South where I thought most of the trouble lurked.

I, like so many of my generation, morphed almost overnight from my conservative, modest small-town upbringing into a liberal free-thinking know-it-all.(Perhaps I should have said not thinking)  I arrogantly concluded without hesitation that my parents had gotten it wrong about almost everything from politics, sex and race to morality, religion and parenting.

 It was, of course, nothing that four or five decades of hard knocks and real-life experiences couldn't cure, mind you.   I'm so glad that I didn't live in a world that shielded me from personal responsibility and having to accept  consequences for my actions and mistakes.

In the course of the past 50, I've been blessed to have lived long enough to learn from my many experiences and observe those of others--and to readjust much of my thinking and behavior as my worldview slowly but surely changed. Today, I look back and hardly recognize the kiddish person I was back when MLK made his famous dream speech.

Of course, without a doubt, I think there were some good things that came from the early stages of the civil rights and women's movements which I embraced so whole-heartedly in the beginning-----to wit, we now have a black president and women have broken so many glass ceilings that it's hard to imagine how it was back in the dark ages of my youth.

Still, with the seeming 'success' of each movement has come a dark, slippery side of loss and unintended consequences. Who would have thought with women winning the right to choose, they would never be satisfied?  That the cause would become a perpertual big business and power play for more.

They would then, emboldened, demand the right to choose late-term abortion-killing anytime, anyplace and at taxpayers' expense no less?

Who would have foreseen Dr. King's speech would have started a decades-long blame and race baiting business that would never be satisfied either?

If MLK's dream is not as alive today, could it be it's because his people have chosen another lesser, blame-based dream, like the dream of government-sanctioned irresponsibility? 

Who would have thought that the success of the civil rights, sexual revolution, coupled with government entitlements, would bring an almost complete loss of personal responsibility and  consequences which could have matured the American black family, rather than destroy it? Certainly not I. 

Who would have imagined that the grandiose sexual revolution, abortion-on-demand, easy divorce and women-trying-to-have-it-all would be so wrought with the breakdown of the family, miserable loneliness, disease and mental and sexual confusion?  But that the blame would still be put on the white man.

I will come back with a very short vignette of a personal experience I've had with a lovely black woman who has struggled for years with a  black man of her generation with whom she has two sons,.


Tregonsee said...

For whatever reason, I never went down the popular rebellion road in the 1960s and 1970s. Perhaps because I was already fascinated by history, and knew the world did not begin with my birth. The civil rights revolution was the one thing my generation got right, and then they managed to screw it up. Somewhere very hot, Bull Connor and Ross Barnett are smiling.

Webutante said...

Great comment, Treg! I like the part about knowing 'the world did not begin or end with you.' I shudder to think how immature and idealistic I was and feel blessed to have been brought back to reality by the Grace of God only.