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MLK quote was real enough! Don’t let the haters take the message away…

Somehow, those of us who believe in peace are easily shamed and/or thwarted by the right-wing. Don’t let them take away the energy of Martin Luther King Jr.’s teachings, or our grace in eschewing hatred, just by saying that we got a quote wrong.

Martin Luther King, Jr. did say:

“And the other thing is, I’m concerned about a better world. I’m concerned about justice; I’m concerned about brotherhood; I’m concerned about truth.  And when one is concerned about that, he can never advocate violence. For through violence you may murder a murderer, but you can’t murder murder. Through violence you may murder a liar, but you can’t establish truth. Through violence you may murder a hater, but you can’t murder hate through violence. Darkness cannot put out darkness; only light can do that.”

There was a short quote circulating about the death of Osama – sometimes attached to part of the above quotation – which some people thought was from MLK. Though, that one piece was simply a comment that someone introduced the King quote with. And, the two sentiments were merged in the retelling. So, the words, “”I mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy”, was not straight from MLK’s mouth. (Though, whoever said it, we could use that person as a leader instead of the bullies in our government.)

And, if you want a quotation like that one, from a historical figure, you can still quote Polish journalist and novelist, Henryk Sienkiewicz, who said, “There is within us a moral instinct which forbids us to rejoice at the death of even an enemy.” Without Dogma (1891)

I discovered part of the truth by quizzing wise friends. The Sienkiewicz quote, specifically, comes from the skeptics website: here.

I am with Martin Luther King, Jr.; Henryk Sienkiewicz, and the anonymous poster whose words were so poignant and on point, they were picked up by thousands of people today on Twitter and FaceBook.

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