Martin Luther King Jr., the son of a Baptist preacher, believed that nonviolence can accomplish a great deal. He was a great inspirational leader who showed courage and strength in all he achieved during a time when a nation stood divided. Now I ask you, if he was alive today, what would his voice say about bullying, racism and violence?
How could bullying, racism and violence operate as one unit? Simple: Racism begets bullying; bullying begets racism; bullying and racism beget violence.
Bullying and violence need to be dealt with. Being bullied can lower your self-esteem. It will make you become shy around everyone, make you suicidal, and you won’t be able to go to school anymore. Being a bully is an awful thing to be. But bullies enjoy the other’s pain; eventually they may become sadistic.
If Martin Luther King Jr. were alive today, what would his voice say? Through my voice he would say, “Don’t be tormented or don’t torment others. Stop this foolishness. Violence only ignites violence. Educate your mind and become someone positive. Education and knowledge are powerful tools.”
Become mentors, big brothers and big sisters. Help build up your fellow man. Give them pride and self-worth. Help clean up your neighborhood. Say no to drugs! Say no to violence. These are things that tear down communities, families and the human spirit.
This great leader talked about how “men often hate each other because they fear each other; they fear each other because they don’t know each other; they don’t know each other because they cannot communicate; they cannot communicate because they are separated.”
This is true, and this is why so many young people are being bullied — because they are different because of their religious background or if you are female or male. How can we solve, “Hate begets hate; violence begets violence?”
If Martin Luther King Jr. were alive today he would say, “I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright days break of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality … I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word.”
Like Martin Luther King Jr. I would say this today “Speak up! Speak loud! Be heard! One person can make a difference. Two people can start a ripple in the water, three people band together, and an army can strike a mighty blow in a mountain.”
Naja Lee Bynum
Martin Middle School