The cartoon The Boondocks had an episode on the Cartoon Network last year where, instead of Martin Luther King, Jr being assassinated, he was greatly injured and was in a coma for almost 20 years, coming out of it and having to look at the world that he may have helped to create. He wasn’t happy with it at all, and, after some years, in a fit of rage one night, made one final speech that basically told the American public off, then walked away, moved to Canada, and was never heard from again.

However, his words made people think, and so they began to try to work with each other, to eliminate poverty, to stop harming each other physically or verbally, and improved the schools so that every American citizen would have a chance at a good life.

As interesting as the cartoon was, it made me wonder just how did Dr. King view our future. Sure, we have a couple of very well known speeches where he talks about a dream and a vision, but is that enough?

I’d like to add this to the mix. This was the final paragraph of the speech he gave when he won the Nobel Peace Prize, and, maybe, this is his hope for our future:

Let me close by saying that I have the personal faith that mankind will somehow rise up to the occasion and give new directions to an age drifting rapidly to its doom. In spite of the tensions and uncertainties of this period something profoundly meaningful is taking place. Old systems of exploitation and oppression are passing away, and out of the womb of a frail world new systems of justice and equality are being born. Doors of opportunity are gradually being opened to those at the bottom of society. The shirtless and barefoot people of the land are developing a new sense of “some-bodiness” and carving a tunnel of hope through the dark mountain of despair. “The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light.” Here and there an individual or group dares to love, and rises to the majestic heights of moral maturity. So in a real sense this is a great time to be alive.

Therefore, I am not yet discouraged about the future. Granted that the easygoing optimism of yesterday is impossible. Granted that those who pioneer in the struggle for peace and freedom will still face uncomfortable jail terms, painful threats of death; they will still be battered by the storms of persecution, leading them to the nagging feeling that they can no longer bear such a heavy burden, and the temptation of wanting to retreat to a more quiet and serene life. Granted that we face a world crisis which leaves us standing so often amid the surging murmur of life’s restless sea. But every crisis has both its dangers and its opportunities. It can spell either salvation or doom. In a dark confused world the kingdom of God may yet reign in the hearts of men.