It would serve us all well to remember that in his day, the Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King was labeled a radical and an extremist. He was an “agitator,” a “negro” who didn’t know his place. He broke unjust laws and stared down injustice and evil. He was stubborn. He was hated. Everyone around him told him to be more patient, more calm, to work with less urgency. And because he wisely refused, he went to jail 29 times! Twenty nine! He was a criminal in his day. Today is when we white people post our nice little tributes with out of context palatable excerpts to soothe our consciences and make us feel less responsible. Instead, we should reflect on his radical love. A love that didn’t sit quietly and pat the millions of suffering Black People on their arms and urge patience. It was a love that took to the streets. That prayed. That organized and marched and went to jail and forwent its own peace for the future peace of others. And guess what? Doctor King was murdered precisely because of his insistence in cold blood at 39 years of age. He left behind a wife and children. He died because, at the end of the day, he was merely another black man who had to be made an example to intimidate others into complacent and fearful silence. He did not live to a ripe old age. He did not spend his final years in a rocking chair marveling at the post racial paradise we too often pretend we lived in. He died in the heat of a spiritual battle for the heart and soul of a nation. This was Doctor King. He had a dream, yes. But he didn’t awake from the dream and pretend that all was well. He fought and died for that dream. He opened a festering wound in our national body that had to be lanced. It seems that we have yet to finish that unpleasant but vital task.