Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Vision and a Plan

Everyone has a plan, 'til they get punched in the mouth. Mike Tyson

It was Martin Luther King, Jr. day and it seemed rather appropriate to blog on a man whose name is synonymous with change. This post is late because it took me some time to find what I was looking for.

It's relatively easy to find his speeches. They are, after all, amazing oratory that are both visionary and inspirational, but also superficial. Now I've heard thousands of visionary, inspirational speakers in my life. Most of whom failed to actually create change. In the end, they had no plan and no reasoning, just imagery and emotion.

I knew that King had to have a deeper understanding of the issues and a real sense of how to implement change - as I believe the speeches and leadership would have failed without it.

I found rather quickly that this was the opinion of many of the King scholars; however, I didn't want to read what others thought of King, but wanted it in his own words.

I found what I was looking for in a  Letter from a Birmingham Jail. A thought filled, logical, persuasive work that explained his tactics and reasons to his fellow clergymen who were critical of King's methods. While not exactly a tome of wisdom at about six pages in length, it was concise and pragmatic.

So take a few seconds to read his 'I have a Dream Speech,' but then read the Letter. And consider whether it could BE different without the depth of thought contained in the latter.

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