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I am a high school English teacher in an urban high school in Oklahoma City. I am a member of the American Federation of Teachers, Local 2309. I am a Democrat, a union activist and a worker for social justice. I also am a Christian (Congregationalist). I play chess and coach our school chess team.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Woe Unto You Hypocrites!

Pres. Bush at the tomb of Martin Luther King, Jr.

Matthew 23: 29-32
The words of Jesus:
"Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You build tombs for the prophets and decorate the graves of the righteous. And you say, 'If we had lived in the days of our forefathers, we would not have taken part with them in shedding the blood of the prophets.' So you testify against yourselves that you are the descendants of those who murdered the prophets. Fill up, then, the measure of the sin of your forefathers!"

The words of Jesus still ring true. While prophets are alive, and King was a prophet for our time, they are reviled, ridiculed, and rejected. After their death, they are honored. Conservatives try to misuse King's statement, "I have a dream that my four children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character." They try to use it to deny economic justice measure like affirmative action.

What they forget (or ignore) is that the day King was assassinated in Memphis, he had come to support a sanitation workers strike. King believed in economic justice, and it became the thrust of his work and ministry (along with opposition to the Vietnam War).

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