Dr Martin Luther King Jr – Ends Justify the Means

January 17, 2011

“Martin Luther King, Jr. (January 15, 1929 – April 4, 1968) was an American clergyman, activist, and prominent leader in the African American civil rights movement. He is best known for being an iconic figure in the advancement of civil rights in the United States and around the world, using nonviolent methods following the teachings of Mahatma Gandhi. King is often presented as a heroic leader in the history of modern American liberalism.” Wikipedia


I wanted to write something about Dr Martin Luther King Jr today. The day where city officials and government offices among many other businesses get a day off to celebrate this man’s great accomplishments in the civil rights movement. No. Most people enjoy their day off and spend the day shopping for all of the Martin Luther King sales. I don’t usually think about it either and just go on with my day too.


A few years ago someone told me interesting facts about Dr Martin Luther King Jr. Facts about his lying, plagiarism, cheating, infidelity and much more. The past few days I’ve been reading about Dr King and found many pages that dug up a lot of dirt on him. It was all referenced and seemed legitimate. I was going to focus on what a flawed man he was on the very day Americans should be thinking of him. Then I was just going to list a lot of links about him.


I decided against it. It would be going against my own beliefs. I’ve written about this before and discussed it with many people. I would start with the question “If the end results are good, does it really matter the motivation or the intent behind them?” In my opinion a good deed is a geed deed. OK, if a person breaks the law and the end result helps someone it is in question. It depends what kind of law. Murder, rape, and stealing most likely wouldn’t justify the ends. People are people. It is ridiculous to expect anyone to be perfect. Most of us have gone against our own morals and expectations. We’ve all made mistakes.


Here are a few examples in my own life and people I know. Say I help someone out with money. I tell them it’s a gift. Then I brag about it to make myself look like a great person. I secretly expect them to owe me a favor even though I told the person I didn’t. Do my expectations and intent take away from the good deed? A guy I know comes off self-righteous to me. He is constantly doing good for people and is not only a brags about it he but he preaches to everyone he knows that they should do the same. Meanwhile he also violates many of the morals and the principles he pushes on others. Do the ends justify the means? Absolutely. You can’t take away the good he has done despite his self-righteousness and hypocrisy. Ok, maybe these are minor examples but they illustrate the point.


I realized that I don’t care what the man who influenced and inspired so many people and made a major contribution to the civil rights movement did behind the curtains or in the past. No one can change what Dr Martin Luther King has done for this country. The ends once again justify the means.


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