Letter from the editor: To use ellipsis is to erase


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I can remember the moment down to the last detail: the hot Georgia sun reflecting off of the sky-blue water, the sound of history bellowing through an otherwise deafening silence, and a ubiquitous presence.

This was an autonomous place of reverence, carving space out of a bustling metropolis for reflection and appreciation.

I had never experienced anything like it.

In the summer of 2016, my family and I had the privilege of visiting the Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent and Social Change in Atlanta, Georgia — the burial place of Dr. King and his wife, fellow civil rights leader Coretta Scott King.

We also visited the adjacent historic Ebenezer Baptist Church, where Dr. King and his father were once pastors. His famous speeches and sermons echoed through the pews.

It was a stop-you-in-your-tracks, take-your-breath-away moment. It was history coming off of the page, seeping into my eyes and ears. A history we as a nation recall every third Monday of January.

But are Dr. King’s words really remembered, or do we get the abridged version?

More often than not, we get the abridged.

You’ve probably seen posts on social media from politicians, businesses, and people in your community commemorating MLK Day.

Are the tributes a quote from Dr. King? Are the quotes just flat-out incorrect? Some paraphrased, more digestible (to some) version with an ellipsis?

More often than not, they are.

It is time we end the omission and recognize the radical truth of Dr. King’s words. It’s more difficult to twist the narrative and hide behind words when we truly look at his goal – when we truly look at his message in totality. In it, you find conscience calls for all of us and a roadmap to achieving true equity.

For every quote that you may see as you scroll through social media, I encourage you to use reputable resources and find out if the quote you are reading is indeed correct or lacking necessary context — to reflect on the message and its sender.

Are we living in the America Dr. King dreamed of?

A call to serve others and to honor Dr. King’s legacy is apparent in our university in so many ways.  Student leaders, scholars, organizations, and many more put in the work every day. Thank you for your service to our community.

As much as visiting The King Center was a forcible pause for my fifteen-year-old activist self, passionate about racial, ethnic, and gender equity, it was a call to action to serve others that I will do my best to honor.

As I’ve mentioned in a previous letter, words really do matter. Let us dwell upon the words and actions of Dr. King in the fullness of their meaning.

The Post will also be covering the Keeper of the Dream Scholarship Awards Celebration and MLK Day of Service.