As King noted, silence is complicity
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. mused that “people of ill will have used time much more effectively than the people of good will.” He prophesied, “We will have to repent in this generation not merely for the vitriolic words and actions of the bad people, but for the appalling silence of the good people.”
It’s the appalling silence of good people that has allowed huge racial disparities to hinder blacks, Latinx, and other people of color and has prevented racial equity for all. When politicians make racist statements, the silence of many other political leaders is appalling. Silence is complicity.
The huge demonstrations led by Rev. William Barber of the NAACP, and now of the Poor People’s Campaign, show that good people are speaking out for justice and equality.
Dr. King would surely have explained to the good people who yearn for justice that all issues of justice are related.
The women’s marches in Black Mountain, Asheville, and across the nation and the world show that good women and men refuse to be silent in the face of racism, sexual harassment, violence against women, pay inequity, and other kinds of discrimination.
Roberta Madden, ERA-NC Alliance co-president