“the fierce urgency of now”

Barack Obama quotes Dr. Martin Luther King Jr a lot on the campaign trail. Particularly he says a lot about how he is running because of what Dr. King called the “the fierce urgency of now.”

We are now faced with the fact, my friends, that tomorrow is today. We are confronted with the fierce urgency of now. In this unfolding conundrum of life and history, there is such a thing as being too late. Procrastination is still the thief of time. Life often leaves us standing bare, naked, and dejected with a lost opportunity. The tide in the affairs of men does not remain at flood-it ebbs. We may cry out desperately for time to pause in her passage, but time is adamant to every plea and rushes on. Over the bleached bones and jumbled residues of numerous civilizations are written the pathetic words, “Too late.” There is an invisible book of life that faithfully records our vigilance or our neglect. Omar Khayyam is right: “The moving finger writes, and having writ moves on.”

Those were the words that Dr. King spoke in his address delivered at Riverside Church in NYC on the 4th of April, 1967. The speech was entitled  “Beyond Vietnam.

Today the cause is different. The challenges are different. But the stakes are just as high. We don’t have time to spare. “The moving finger writes, and having writ moves on.” That writing is being written. Our history is being written and if we just sit here and do nothing the pages will keep on being written. And they are not going to be pretty.

I’m 14 years old. The challenges we face are urgent for me.

The climate crisis is urgent for me.

The war is urgent for me.

The economy is urgent for me.

The healthcare crisis is urgent for me.

The education system is urgent for me.

Those are just a few problems we face that I have listed. But we have a lot more then just that to face.

The point is they are all URGENT.

We can’t afford four more years of the same old thing. Maybe Barack Obama is too big a risk to take. Maybe he will be a complete failure. No one knows. But I don’t think he will. Most of the work will be up to us. But I think Barack Obama will do a pretty darn good job of using the White House to help make social change. If you do too we can’t sit ideally by. “We are now faced with the fact, my friends, that tomorrow is today”

So what are you waiting for?

Get active! First of all, call people! Also on Sunday I wrote a diary about 5 easy ways to get active. Check it out. Also one more thing. My fellow blogger snout launched the Obama Action Network, it is a group for all Obama supporters who are taking action. It will be a great resource to help you take action and have fun while you’re doing it. Action, fun and change. Does it get better? Share your story with a super delegate. There are so many ways you can get involved, so pick one and try. The finger isn’t stopping it’s writing.

And always remember one thing: Donate!

Now let us begin. Now let us rededicate ourselves to the long and bitter, but beautiful, struggle for a new world. This is the calling of the sons of God, and our brothers wait eagerly for our response. Shall we say the odds are too great? Shall we tell them the struggle is too hard? Will our message be that the forces of American life militate against their arrival as full men, and we send our deepest regrets? Or will there be another message-of longing, of hope, of solidarity with their yearnings, of commitment to their cause, whatever the cost? The choice is ours, and though we might prefer it otherwise, we must choose in this crucial moment of human history.

-Dr. Martin Luther King Jr


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  1. Here is some good music to make up for it

    I love RENT.

    Let’s become a nation of love, hope and peace not of hate, fear and war.

    measure your life in love

  2. and the urgency is real…..

    thank you populista….

           Over the bleached bones and jumbled residues of numerous civilizations are written the pathetic         words, “Too late.”………

    and that is the terrible truth associated with the human condition…..

    it has been said that we are good at wolves at the door, and terrible with termites in the cellar…

    perhaps we must wait until the termites become wolves….

  3. of now we, the future wouldn’t hold such fear. Thanks Populista your an amazing person. The trick for a lot is the mistaken belief that security exists outside us or is ever secure. We create reality and fear stops us in our tracks. The concept of empowering the devil you know, out of fear of the unknown, just makes the good unreachable.

    I am proud of the young un’s who have not accepted the perceived limitations of the future, and although a geezer it makes me want to stick around and watch you ‘roll the dice’ for a new reality, a fearless one, a positive one. Lead on.  

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