MLK and the Style of Substance
Have you ever taken a good look at photos of Martin Luther King, Jr? I ask because, well, I did that today and I walked away from the exercise with this observation: MLK had style. A whole lot of it. This got me thinking about the relationship between how we look and what we say when what we say is so important that presumably how we look shouldn't matter at all. Yet, when the substance is already there, does style matter?
Here's what I know: a leader of Dr. King's magnitude undoubtedly understood the importance of messaging. And how we look, for better or worse, is an implicit part of our messaging: it communicates something about who we are before we say a thing. Could it be that Dr. King used appearance as a tool to convey his message? Then again, he dreamed of the day in which people ultimately wouldn't be judged by how they look at all, but for who they are. Accordingly, does saying that Dr. King had style somehow take away from the substance of his message? Let's discuss.
In the mean time, I couldn't think of a leader whose courage, wisdom, and conviction is more needed in the time ahead than Dr. King's. I have so much hope that his peaceful, loving, and inclusive vision for our humanity will help us find our way forward.