What One Question Would You Ask Dr. Martin Luther King Jr?

“I was 7 years old when Dr. King was assassinated. Like many 7-year-olds at the time, I was not paying attention to what was going on in the world let alone remember seeing the news reports on television and being saddened about his death but did not understand the significance. I gained more understanding over the years but did not really get it until the world blew up a few years ago. I know there has been a lot of progress toward equality, but I feel we could and should be getting there a lot faster. If I could ask Dr. King, one question I would ask him…What are we still missing?” – Michael F., Regional Facilities Manager, MHNW.

This year, Martin Luther King Jr. Day is on Monday, Jan. 15. While the holiday is always recognized on the third Monday of January, this year’s celebration is unique because it falls on what would have been Dr. King’s 95th birthday.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. might be best known for his “I Have a Dream” speech. Often referred to as one of the greatest speeches in American History, this speech was instrumental in getting the Civil Rights Act of 1969 passed.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. – “I Have A Dream” speech

Mercy Housing was built upon these three values, Respect, Justice, and Mercy. It is these values that drive us in the work we do every single day. We recently asked Mercy Housing staff what one question they would ask Dr. King if he were alive today.

Mercy Housing Staff Weighs In

  • “How close are we to fulfilling your dream today compared to 1963?” – Web Brown, Vice President of Racial Equity and Inclusion
  •  “What is the one, most critical action we can take, as a society, right now, to move towards greater equity?  It is all about taking action and achieving a positive impact. – Susan S., Vice President of Edu and EE Development
  • “I would ask Dr, King how one can stay hopeful, continue in the work when it seems like the world is against making progress.” – Virginia A. Regional Management Specialist
  • “I wouldn’t ask him anything. I would thank him for paving the way for us to empower individuals, strengthen communities, bridge barriers, create solutions to social problems, thus moving us closer to his vision of a “Beloved Community.” It is because of his fight that today we are able to work to make a difference in the communities and in the lives of the populations we serve. I believe he would be proud of the work that has been done so far. The job doesn’t end there, there will always be a need for change and improvements. I think that his vision of a “Beloved Community” is exactly what we are creating every day by working together and fighting to make the necessary changes to keep his dream alive.” – Lina M., Resident Services Coordinator
  • I would of course thank Dr. King for the tremendous work he did toward gaining basic human rights for all and I would ask him how did he stay so strong in the midst of such abhorrent hate and ignorance?​” – Norlaine K., Philanthropy Coordinator
  • I would love to ask Dr. King what he feels is the next step America needs to take in furthering equality and social justice. A lot of great efforts by so many people have been, and are being made, but it feels like we can and should do more.
  • “I would ask Dr. King what he would be working on today if he were still with us. It’s tragic to think about what might have turned out differently if he and others had been able to continue their work on economic just in the late 60’s.” – Doug Shoemaker, MHC President
Mercy Housing’s REDI Collaborative Team

Although Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. died over 50 years ago, his work toward a more equitable and just society continues to move forward. Mercy Housing believes that social justice is housing justice and our values are more than just words on a poster or a website. Our commitment to racial equity, diversion, and inclusion through our core values is unwavering across all of our work.