Famous Sayings #191 — ‘The Tranquilizing Drug of Gradualism’

January 18, 2021

This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism.

Rowland Scherman, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

Today is Martin Luther King Day, and to commemorate this holiday, I would like to revisit another quote from the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. This quote might not be as familiar to most of us as some others, but it is one that is oft-repeated by activists because of what it says about the fight against inequality.

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Reading, Viewing, and Listening for Martin Luther King Day 2019

Martin Luther King, Martin Luther King Day, Reading, Listening, Viewing, Quotesk Civil Rights Movement

Martin Luther King Day 2019 is almost over where I am, but before it ends, I wanted to share some more links that I found today. Since this has become somewhat of a tradition (started on MLK Day in 2017), why not? This time, I found links to a few speeches made by the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., as well as links to videos and audio. Let’s look them over, shall we?

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Let’s Talk About Identity Politics

identity politics, Combahee River Collective, Civil Rights Movement, black feminists, progressives

I was arguing about identity politics a few days ago because it became clear that many people, including lefties, are averse to the topic. I argued my point, but I don’t feel that I convinced anyone to take a deeper look into what Identity politics is.

A couple of days later, I also saw a video made by the much-maligned “Factual Feminist,” Christine Hoff Sommers:

I felt that the video’s arguments were so off-base that I responded to Hoff-Sommers’ tweet with a thread of my own (via my personal Twitter account).

The arguments surrounding identity politics bother me because they are fallacious. I feel that identity politics movement arose with good intentions and that there is a place for it, but others don’t want to see it that way. Hence, why I’m making this post. Not everyone who comes across this post wants to look at identity politics from a different angle, but I will make my case anyway.

Identity politics is a subject that I’m still trying to grapple with. The first time I heard of it was in 2016 and I leaned toward the negative view of it.

Why was I wrong about identity politics? I was wrong because, for one thing, I failed to do my own research about the topic. (I am still learning to withhold judgment for a lot of things until I can do my own research because often, people who make certain claims have an agenda. That’s true of this topic.)

What did I find? There’s too much to parse right now, but let’s begin with some basic information.

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Famous Sayings #112 — ‘By Any Means Necessary’

July 8, 2018

We are going to fight for our rights and get them by any means necessary.

by any means necessary, Malcolm X, Civil Rights Movement, famous sayings
In one of Malcom X’s most famous speeches, he told his followers that they would fight for their human rights “by any means necessary.” Image via Flickr by Sabatu. Public domain image.

This is a phrase that can be applied today, but one that is at least 64 years old.

I first heard the phrase “by any means necessary” in the 1990s, during an episode of The Fresh Prince of Bel Air. In that episode, an activist friend of Phillip and Vivian Banks came to town and began influence Will and Carlton. The activist was still stuck in a 1960s mindset and she told Will that change needed to be fought for “by any means necessary.” Afterward, Will and Carlton tried to engage in their own activism while fighting to save the job of an unconventional teacher at their school.

At the time, I didn’t give much thought to what the phrase meant, especially since it was portrayed in such a negative light. The character who uttered the phrase in the Fresh Prince episode was stuck in time and labeled a radical, which is itself a loaded term. And while Uncle Phil and Aunt Viv were themselves activists in the 1960s, the writers made sure to make it clear that much of that was in the past.

With the past in mind …

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It’s Black History Month (WAW)

Black History Month, Civil Rights Movement

Today is February 1, 2017 and that means it’s the start of Black History Month in the United States. This month, I would like to write a series of posts about rarely discussed items in African-American history, so I will start with this topic.

For years, I have wondered why February was designated as Black History Month and when it began.

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Some Reading for Martin Luther King Day


So, today is Martin Luther King Day in the United States. The national holiday is celebrated on the third Monday in January. The way the holiday is set up now allows it to coincide with MLK’s birthday, which is on the 15th but the holiday was originally set on the fourth Monday in January.

The holiday is recognized to some degree in all 50 states, but it took until 2000 for it to be recognized at all the in state of Arizona (What gives? Don’t you want another day off?)

According to TimeandDate.com, some states recognize Martin Luther King Day along with other holidays.

  • In Arizona and New Hampshire, the day is combined with Civil Rights Day.
  • Idaho recognizes Human Rights Day.
  • Wyoming recognizes the day as Wyoming Equality Day.
  • Some states celebrate it along with Robert E. Lee’s birthday …

Anyway, I thought I would use this space to talk about a few articles I found today.

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In This Argument: They’re Both Wrong (WAW)

argument, Bernie Sanders

For this week’s Write Anything Wednesday, I would like to share a few political musings. I know where I stand and you may differ from me. But that shouldn’t really be an issue … today.

What would I like to talk about? To be quite honest, I’m really going to talk about the issues because …

Ugh …This U.S. Presidential Election really sucks!

Okay, after having got that off my chest, I wanted to say that I was bothered a discussion I read on a forum I frequent. Well, I am more of a lurker nowadays, but I have gone back often.

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