RE: [asa] MLK day

From: Dehler, Bernie <>
Date: Mon Jan 19 2009 - 19:18:51 EST

Actually, Merv- I love pithy proverbs and illustrative metaphors. I simply think these don't make much sense. I think it really stems from a form of hero worship- in other words, they are nice sayings not because of the content, but because of who said it. It's time to lift-up MLK, so people are trying to get the best quotes they can to do it. I'm all for lifting-up MLK, but see no need to stoop to sayings that don't mean much.

The quote below was just a negative viewpoint on the status of the human condition by MLK. I actually see things in a much more positive light... esp. magnified so much with the election of the first African-American President of the USA, which is affecting the entire world and not just the USA.

As for a good quote from MLK, I think the most moving one is where he says people should be judged by the content of their character and not by the color of their skin. I give a hearty AMEN! to that!


-----Original Message-----
From: Merv Bitikofer []
Sent: Monday, January 19, 2009 4:06 PM
To: Dehler, Bernie;
Subject: Re: [asa] MLK day

Hi, Bernie. I get the feeling you aren't a "pithy, clever,
pack-an-inspiration-in-a-saying kind of guy. Perhaps these quotations
have the serious limitation of being understood only by those who are
already most of the way there in their ideology. Sort of like
mini-parables. Without any appreciation for metaphor and necessary
generalizations such meanings are totally lost. Nevertheless, let me
try once more: Maybe 'guided' in this context could be compared with
someone who is governed by benevolent principles or vision. In this
person's hands, tools such as education, technology, wealth, etc. may
become forces for good. In the 'unguided' person's hands (or worse
yet, and more likely --guided by evil principles) all those same things
become tools for evil. Educate a charlatan without addressing issues of
integrity, and you've only created an intelligent devil: much worse
than the good-hearted and bumbling fool. As to which of these
undesirable conditions is the easier to correct: God only knows.


Dehler, Bernie wrote:
> "Our scientific power has outrun our spiritual power.
> We have guided missiles and unguided men."
> I don't see much intelligence there- as we also have unguided missiles and guided men.
> So what? Was there supposed to be meaning in it?
> Was MLK a "guided man?" Does he expect all men to be "guided?" If not- what's his point?
> We find ourselves here today- having never yet entered WWIII. There may yet be some hope for us.
> ...Bernie
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Merv Bitikofer []
> Sent: Friday, January 16, 2009 5:31 PM
> To: Dehler, Bernie;
> Subject: Re: [asa] MLK day
> Thanks, Keith.
> ...and Bernie, it made perfect sense to me; you're probably trying to
> get more out of pithy & insightful generalizations than was originally
> packed into them. Of course it's an over-simplification! But insightful,
> nonetheless.
> MLK also said in a Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech (1964):
> "Our scientific power has outrun our spiritual power.
> We have guided missiles and unguided men."
> <end quote>
> --Merv
>> "Softmindedness often invades religion. ... Softminded persons have
>> revised the Beautitudes to read "Blessed are the pure in ignorance:
>> for
>> they shall see God." This has led to a widespread belief that there is
>> a conflict between science and religion. But this is not true. There
>> may be a conflict between softminded religionists and toughminded
>> scientists, but not between science and religion. ... Science
>> investigates; religion interprets. Science gives humankind knowledge
>> which is power; religion gives humankind wisdom which is control.
>> Science deals mainly with facts; religion deals mainly with values.
>> The
>> two are not rivals. They are complementary."
>> Strength to Love, 1963
>> Martin Luther King, Jr
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Received on Mon Jan 19 19:19:29 2009

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