Dear Dr. King,

It has been a long 51 years without you here. We are a people of many ideas and passions and I wish we still had your guidance today. On this day, the third Monday of January, we, as a country, celebrate your sacrifice. Your sacrifice has deeply affected me, and shaped who I am today. Often we have to be bold in our convictions and take the path least traveled. Your marches stirred the passions for justice and equality, but unfortunately also feelings of contention and mistrust. Sadly, we tend to only consider your messages on this day of observation, and not in a general sense. Dr. King, the only way we can all do justice to the principles you upheld is by seeking unity despite the differences among us. We are one, and we do best when we pray, when we help, and when we listen to our neighbors, friends, and those we may not know.

Love is the most unifying act we can engage in. While we fall short of applying this principle at times, it’s the reason we have second chances and a new day to mend spirits and to make more heartfelt decisions. I am grateful for your transformative sacrifice and that the Lord guided and blessed you with immense strength. In your final speech you explain, “Well, I don’t know what will happen now. We’ve got some difficult days ahead. But it really doesn’t matter with me now, because I’ve been to the mountaintop. And I don’t mind. Like anybody, I would like to live a long life. Longevity has its place. But I’m not concerned about that now. I just want to do God’s will. And He’s allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I’ve looked over. And I’ve seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the promised land!”

Dr. King, the promised land is something many of us Americans are striving for and we couldn’t have gotten this far without your contribution. Equality, justice, and love were the values that guided your movement and as Americans, the promised land is not found in any other way but through those values. I thank you, Dr. King, for your vision and I know my brothers and sisters around this great land thank you also.

Sincerely,

Karece Thompson

Chairman, Utah Black Republican Assembly