Dear Dr. Marting Luther King Jr:

Essay add: 30-09-2015, 14:21   /   Views: 264
Dear Dr. Marting Luther King Jr:

After hearing your speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in 1963, I could taste the bitterness in my heart. It is evident that “the Negro is still languishing in the corners of American society” (1). African-Americans are constantly victims of horrible police brutality. Rarely can an African-American find decent lodging in hotels and motels throughout the country. How is it possible for a Negro to feel a part of this country if he or she cannot even vote for who is to govern them? No individual, white or black, should suffer from such injustices. When the founding fathers of our country wrote the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence they formed a promissory note to every American, which guaranteed them “certain unalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness” (Declaration of Independence, pg. 1). It is apparent, though, that “America has given the Negro people a bad check- a check which has come back marked insufficient funds” (1). Many African-Americans may even claim that the bank of justice, which is composed of our civil government and the society in which we live, is bankrupt- that there is no hope for the Negro people in America. However, Dr. King, you refuse “to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of this nation” (1). Your words stirred my soul and made me believe that it is possible for our country to become more racially just. After hearing your powerful speech, I thought back on what this country was built on. I searched for what our political and economic systems were based upon. In doing so, I looked to the writings of John Locke and Adam Smith in search of a system that could lead to more liberty and justice for all.

In Locke’s writing entitled The Second Treatise on Civil Government, he asserts that all men are born into a “state of Nature.” Within this “state of Nature” each man is free and equal. Thus, as free and equal human beings, we should love one another: “The state of Nature has a law of Nature to govern it, which obliges every one, and reason, which is that law, teaches all mankind who will but consult it, that being all equal and independent, no one ought to harm another in his life, health, liberty or possessions” (3). The key phrase that Locke uses is “no one ought to harm another.” Nevertheless, out of competition we do cause harm to each other and are thus forced into a “state of War.” As a result, society separates into racial, ethnic, religious, and social groups, many of which oppose each other. Ethnic and racial hatreds seem to be deep-rooted and ready to break out with the slightest provocation. Be that as it may, we are still viewed as being a free people. In doing so, each person is ultimately his or her own judge, jury, and executioner, which can eventually cause complete chaos. According to the state of Nature, anything that a person puts labor into can be claimed as their property: “Whatsoever, then, [a person] removes out of the state that Nature hath provided and left it in, [the person] hath mixed his [or her] labour with it, and joined to it something that is his [or her] own, and thereby makes it his [or her] property” (8). However, because each person is judge, jury, and executioner, chaos arises and no one knows who owns what. Therefore, Locke states that a civil government should be formed in order to provide order among the people. According to Locke’s Second Treatise on Civil Government, the responsibility of the government is to provide order and to protect its people, not to rule over them. It must protect the right to life, the right to freedom, and the right to property. Within Locke’s political society the government functions with the consent of the governed. Unfortunately, Dr. King, a tyranny of the majority has presently emerged. The white majority has given the Negro community a “bad check”- they have given them unfair opportunities and have shown them racial injustice. The white majority has refused to accept the Negro into their competitive society.

Furthermore, within this competitive society that has emerged, Adam Smith claims that there is an “invisible hand” that drives each person. According to Smith’s Wealth of Nations, an “invisible hand” forces people to work in order to make more money. Out of each person’s own self-interest, society will benefit: “[A person] intends only his [or her] own gain, and he [or she] is in this, as in many other cases, led by an invisible hand to promote an end which was no part of his [or her] intention” (24). Thus, Smith describes the cycle in which society operates. People create products in order to make money to buy certain necessities. This in turn repeats itself over and over again. The invisible hand theory is created out of every person’s self-interest, which then influences even more competition. The more people that touch the money within the cycle, the more reliable the cycle will be- the more likely an individual can prosper. However, for an individual to achieve such wealth within the cycle, they must be educated with certain essential skills. Education is necessary in order to maintain the cycle. Each person, from the lowest to the most prominent occupation within the cycle, should be educated: “But though the common people cannot, in any civilized society, be so well instructed as people of some rank and fortune, the most essential parts of education, however, to read, write, and account, can be acquired at so early a period of life that the greater part even of those who are to be bred to the lowest occupations have time to acquire them before they can be employed in those occupations” (29).

Therefore, Dr. King, it would be in everyone’s best interest to include the Negro people in society. It would be advantageous for the white man to accept the Negro into his competitive cycle- the more people that touch the money, the more incentives. In doing so, the invisible hand is colorblind. In fact, there is only one color that dominates this country- green. Money is the sole motivation for each individual, white or black. In the eyes of commerce, we are all of the same species- fundamentally alike and living in the same world. As a result, the government should take steps toward protecting the rights of African-Americans and see to it that they receive an adequate education. John Locke and Adam Smith may have argued that the engine of society is self-interest, but we can use their points to evolve the human race so that people- white or black, Hispanic or Chinese, purple or yellow, whatever race, color, or religion they may be- can live peacefully among each other.

Article name: Dear Dr. Marting Luther King Jr: essay, research paper, dissertation