RE: [asa] MLK day

From: Dehler, Bernie <>
Date: Tue Jan 20 2009 - 13:55:59 EST

Thinking about it more- I think the pessimism of MLK is very understandable because of the times he lived in- with basic civil liberties denied because of his skin color. Even though "he had a dream," I bet he couldn't imagine a black man becoming President in 2009... I think that was a wild-card that surpassed worldwide dreams.

Still- I think it (the "unguided" man quote) was a statement of pessimism and not applicable today. Today should be a reason for great hope and say "see, goodness will overcome... a bright day dawns as we enter a new era!"


-----Original Message-----
From: []
Sent: Tuesday, January 20, 2009 10:35 AM
To: Dehler, Bernie
Cc: asa
Subject: RE: [asa] MLK day

That saying is a great one too! I don't think I'm engaging in hero worship in
this case. I really do think he is great because of the things he said and
especially did; and not the other way around. (doesn't mean I agree with him
100% necessarily --though at the moment I can't think of any quotation of his
that I disagree with.) It is quite a day of hoopla, isn't it!! --as well it
should be.


Quoting "Dehler, Bernie" <>:

> 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!
> ...Bernie
> -----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.
> --Merv
> 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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> >
> >
> >
> >
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Received on Tue Jan 20 13:56:51 2009

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