By Jacob Stockinger
Today we celebrate the birthday of the civil rights pioneer Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.
The Ear thinks of him as The Great Emancipator of the modern age.
As the Abraham Lincoln of our age.
Just as Lincoln freed slaves, Martin Luther King Jr. (below) helped free so many members of different social groups from discrimination.
Blacks, of course.
But also women.
Gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgender people.
The old and elderly.
The Ear loves the way that the Gertrude Stein-like repetitions of Lincoln’s own words build into a moving testament of the need for both compassion and democracy – a combination that today’s right-wing freedom-spouting and Constitution-citing bigots might do well to cultivate.
So we can listen about one man and think about the other.
Here is a great version, in a YouTube video at the bottom, with actor Henry Fonda as the narrator. There are other fine versions, including one with Leonard Bernstein conducting and composer Aaron Copland speaking the narration. But this version is the one that most moves The Ear.
And please leave your COMMENTS about this offering or other music appropriate to mark Martin Luther King Jr. Day for others to read.