Talking to a student, just now, I surprised myself realizing that for me and many that everyday is Martin Luther King's day. On the eve of a coup in Argentina, taking over my country, I told the fearless social activists and progressive thinkers that were my parents, that I would not go to the kindergarten they had sent me to because they treated kids as if they were stupid, and that I would choose my own school. That's how I ended up, after traveling from school to school, in the place where I would stay for the rest of my education.
The school was run mostly by nuns who were aligned with the Theology of Liberation, a branch of Catholicism that enhances love, social change, social activism and the values of diversity, equity and inclusion in action. It was presented to the mainstream community as holding a humanistic based approach. They were also mostly indigenous, lesbian and highly educated: a combo that no woman could survive easily in South America back then, and the reason why many women would seek refuge in the robes of nuns. Tragically too, the reason why, during the Coup itself, so many nuns, and monks, and priests were prosecuted, tortured and murdered. The Bible that we used for our studies was a Latin American version of the Bible with quotes and pictures of Gandhi and Martin Luther King. As the Coup took place, this bible was prohibited in Argentina along with most text books that did not have a clear fascist standing. This did not stop us, including children, from keeping and reading anything we could get our hands on; and in the case of my brother and I, lots of things, like the balm of Jazz, Blues and Bossa Nova, even with all the risks.
The profound impression that Dr Martin Luther King made in my soul is as vivid now as then. A beginning from those early times when I was starting to find my sound, my beat, my voice.
May he be a continuous source of inspiration for us, Hakomi Cascadia, and all of us who seek truth and love that is unconditional.
"These are revolutionary times; all over the globe men are revolting against old systems of exploitation and oppression. The shirtless and barefoot people of the world are rising up as never before. The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light...
We must move past indecision to action...if we do not act, we shall surely be dragged down the long, dark and shameful corridors of time reserved for those who posses power without compassion, might without morality and, strength without sight."
Martin Luther King , Jr.,
April 4, 1967