So yesterday was my day to preach. And this is how I started my sermon:
I have to being today with two confessions. First confession…there is one Sunday in the UU liturgical year that I try my hardest to NOT be in a UU church. As I am telling you this today, it doesn’t take a genius to guess that it’s Martin Luther King Sunday. Part of this is because I am much more of a Malcolm X, “We didn’t land on Plymouth Rock, Plymouth Rock landed on us” type of girl. The other part is because I have nightmares. That’s right, I said I have nightmares. Nightmares that consist of me listening to Unitarian Universalists sing “Precious Lord, Take My Hand” and “Lift Every Voice And Sing.” Badly.
Now I don’t want to get into the second part of the first confession, but I’ve been thinking a lot about the first part of the confession.
Is there a place in UUism for those who are more attracted to the rhetoric of Malcolm X than that of Martin Luther King, Jr.?
How much of the liberal religious attraction to MLK has to do with the fact you can focus on the second part of the I Have A Dream Speech and totally ignore the 3 pages single spaced typed text before he even utters the words “I have a dream?”
How much of the attraction is that MLK can be put into a nice little box and pulled out on days like yesterday, when you want to show how open and welcoming you are?
How much of the attraction to MLK is so that you can downplay and ignore those who were in your own movement like Ethelred Brown or the Jordans ( Joseph and Joseph Fletcher)?
Those are the questions that have been coming to my mind since yesterday. Maybe I’ll write more about them later.