“Freedom is never really won. You earn it and win it in every generation.”
-Coretta Scott King
As many of you know or may not know, Coretta Scott King was the wife of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr and she carried on Dr. King’s legacy in being an advocate for African American equality. Today’s quote, as it applies to social awareness reminds us like freedom, anything we want in life is something that is never really won, that it is something we must all earn and win in every generation. We can only do this when we appreciate what has been done for us by others, the sacrifices they made and try to pay it forward to future generations. It reminds me of what i would say to my students each everyday: If it’s to be, it’s up to me. It would tell them that nothing in life will ever be handed to you on silver platter, that you must go out there and get it (whatever it is that you want).
As it relates to Mrs. King’s quote, hers was in response to younger generations saying that despite Dr. King’s and countless others efforts to bring equality to all African Americans had not achieved everything that they had hoped and that they still had to fight for things still. She wanted to reassure them that there had been some positive things that came from the movement like people holding higher end positions like policymakers or politicians unlike they had in the past and without the movement none of this would be possible. This is where her quote came into play.
Life is a never ending struggle and things like freedom are a part of that never ending struggle. Like anything in life once we have earned something it is up to us to keep it and maintain whatever that may be. In this case it is freedom. Whatever we want we have to earn it and cannot live off of the coattails of someone else’s previous accomplishments. We need to put our own mark on the world and have that certain level of impact that leaves our own legacy. Whether it is freedom or anything else in life there is nothing that says it will be protected forever because nothing is forever. We can only do what we can and do our part to pass the torch to the next generation in the hopes that they realize that no one is entitled to anything and if you want it bad enough, you need to respect your past in order to create your future.
What does this quote mean to you and how can you apply today’s message towards becoming more socially aware?