Power at its best is love implementing the demands of justice. Justice at its best is love correcting everything that stands against love.
– Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
As I consider the work and the legacy of Dr. King, I am moved by the realization that his philosophy was deeply rooted in taking ACTION to dismantle systems of oppression and to promote a more just world. He believed that this engagement would lead us to create what he referred to as the “Beloved Community,” where hatred, injustice, and violence are eradicated and where love and justice are the heartbeat of daily life. This concept of being actively involved in the pursuit of justice is one that inspires a few essential questions for me, and I encourage all members of our community to consider as well:
- What does Dr. King’s philosophy of justice and nonviolence mean to me?
- How can I embody love in my actions and beliefs?
- What does it mean to be of service and move our society toward justice?
Though Monday marks a holiday created to celebrate Dr. King’s legacy, at BDS, we honor his work and lasting impact through many actions and activities around our campus. Teachers are reading books and teaching lessons about Dr. King in our classrooms, our middle school kindness club is leading the charge to collect items for donation to Pine Street Inn, our bulletin boards in the gallery will feature information about Dr. King and other changemakers, and our annual assembly to celebrate Dr. King will take place on Friday, January 20. Initiatives that promote equity, inclusion, and belonging at BDS are a direct reflection of the way that Dr. King inspires us to take action.
We know that every member of our community has a part to play as we strive to create the Beloved Community that Dr. King dreamed for us. The King Center’s BE LOVE initiative provides a great frame for how we can each begin our journey toward a just society and pledge to take action. The youth version of the BE LOVE pledge is below, and other versions and languages can be found on their website, thekingcenter.org/belove.
I invite your family to read this pledge together and consider the responsibility it calls each of us to take. Add your name online if you feel comfortable doing so, and keep these words close to your hearts and at the top of your minds as we, as a community, continue to build on Dr. King’s legacy.
BE LOVE PLEDGE
3 Things are True:
- Hate and unfairness in our world have to stop
- I pledge to help make the world a better place
- The choice is mine to do nothing or stand up for what is right
Starting today, I make the personal choice to do something and BE LOVE.
I pledge to let my words and actions show love
I pledge to treat people like they matter
I pledge to kindly remind everyone that they should lead with love
I pledge to focus on changing the things that are wrong,
not hurting the people who are doing wrong things
I pledge to help bring people together and celebrate our differences
I pledge to be courageous and caring while acting with love
to ensure others are not being harmed
I pledge to always do and say what is right
By signing this pledge, I’m helping to create what Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. called The Beloved Community.