Today one of my classmates said the following:
“I admire Martin Luther King and everything, but I just don’t think nonviolent resistance is the right thing. I mean, it’s still resistance. What about nonviolent love? What if instead of banging down your neighbors gate, you went and planted a garden for your neighbor, you know, just show love?”
There is so much to unpack in that, I don’t even know where to begin. Worse, he said it in like the last 10 minutes of seminar, and the teacher was all, “We don’t have time to look at the history and issues of nonviolent resistance, spirituality, and social justice right now, so we’ll get back to it later.”
Which, valid point — it was the end of class, and I wanted to get home just as much as anyone else — but still. What kind of fucking failure of an educational system did that kid go through to get to a space where he legitimately thinks love and gardens would have achieved the same results as the civil rights movement?
If Martin Luther King had tried to lovingly plant a garden in his oppressors’ homes, they would have fucking lynched him. Look at Emmett Till! Beaten and murdered for the alleged “crime” of flirting. Oh, yeah, “love” and “planting gardens” would have done a lot more than the civil rights movement.