MLK Day: Take a pause

Written by Elise Matthews

I just recently watched the movie Green Book.  Set in the Deep South in the 1960s, the movie tells the true story of an African-American classical and jazz pianist on tour and an Italian-American bouncer who served as his driver and bodyguard.  The film is named after The Negro Motorist Green Book, a guidebook for African-American travelers written to help them find motels and restaurants that would accept them. This movie brings a lot of awareness to how difficult it was for non-white Americans to even be able to travel to another city before the civil rights movement, especially in the deep south.   This is something we don’t even pause to think about in today’s world!

My challenge to you today:  Whether you have a today off or not, it’s worth taking a second to pause and reflect on what exactly you have to be thankful for as it relates to the Martin Luther King Jr observed Holiday.  For me, this holiday goes far beyond the man himself, into the Civil rights movement and the cascade of opportunities available for Americans today. Personally, I can say that my life as it is, would not exist without all the men and women who fought so hard for equal rights.  A movie like Green Book, makes it extremely clear to me that I have so much to be thankful for.

As you go through your day today, you might find it an interesting exercise to think about what would be missing from your life if the civil rights movement had not happened.  What do you have to be thankful for?

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