Part of their presentation stressed the need to take King off the pedestal where many have him and make him a less intimidating and more relatable role model. “He was like us,” Professor Romano insisted, “someone who grappled with the challenges of his time, someone who was up against his own limitations, someone who wasn’t always sure how—in his own words—to move a mountain.”
They also revealed that one of King’s final conversations on the evening before his assassination stressed the need to institutionalize nonviolence. “I want you all to recognize that you are doing that right now,” Cambridge pointed out. “You’re institutionalizing the principles and practice of nonviolence and you’re doing it in a very deep way.”
The event concluded with a panel discussion with Director Baker and members of EJE and the Office of Acquisition Management about broadening DOE’s ability to affect change for Americans impacted by the legacy of pollution and environmental injustices, and how those efforts come back to the event’s theme, “It starts with me.” DOE is building on Dr. King’s legacy, advancing equity and justice at the DOE and giving a voice to those who have been historically left behind, and those efforts are all rooted in individual commitments to MLK’s adage: “The time is always right to do right.”
More about the Six Steps of Kingian Nonviolence can be found here.
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