As the nation paused Monday to observe Martin Luther King Jr. Day, the civil rights icon’s son spoke out about the current direction of the United States and how he believes his father would feel if he were alive today.
Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated at age 39, in 1968. The minister and tireless advocate for equal rights is the only African American to be recognized with a federal holiday.
While many of King’s ideals live on, and people of color have made tremendous progress since the 1960s, his dream of a more equal society has not and may not ever be fully realized.
"He would be working diligently to bring our nation together, to make this the nation that it can become, that it has not become yet."@OfficialMLK3 on what his father, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., would do and say if he were alive today. https://t.co/DNRPWa8RS2 pic.twitter.com/x0EWmR6BnQ
— CBS Mornings (@CBSMornings) January 20, 2020
In an interview with CBS This Morning, Martin Luther King III was asked what his father would do and say today.
“I don’t know that anyone can accurately state what Martin Luther King Jr. would say,” his son began. “What I can say is based on his readings, and his writings, and his messages. Had he lived, I think first, I should say, I think we would be on a different trajectory because he was killed and did not get to finish the work that he started.”
He continued: “A lot of things did not come into fruition. Now, if he was just to appear today, I imagine he would be very concerned about the direction some of our leadership is taking us in, particularly the political leadership, the political discourse on both sides. But he certainly would be very concerned about the fact that we’re still consistently engaging in war. He used to say ‘we must face non-violence or we will face non-existence.’ And he’d be very concerned about racial injustice that exists for many in our society today that should not. I think, finally, he would be working diligently to bring our nation together, to make this the nation that it can become, that it has not become yet.”