Last week, on the heels of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and the President’s “shithole” comments, New Jersey Senator, Cory Booker did something important. He gave an impassioned speech denouncing the “amnesia” and “silence” of his fellow government officials. His words were pointed, speaking truth and transparency, and imploring others to do the same.
His words matched my thoughts and feelings so precisely. His words were igniting, elevating. I needed more of them. I started to seek him out on Twitter and Instagram and his Senate page. Through this search I discovered his podcast, Lift Every Voice. I listened to the first episode. I became hooked.
The premise of his podcast is to highlight overlooked issues of injustice and inequality, and provide an outlet for voices to share their inspiring stories of change and action. The first episode featured Civil Rights icon, Representative John Lewis. He is the only living member of the “Big Six”, the group of leaders who organized the March on Washington in 1963, in which Martin Luther King paid his way to help get this movement in motion.
There are so many moments in this podcast I could quote, but I’m simply going to leave these words on the page and let you discover the rest. I hope you will.
“You gotta cause some good trouble. I believe in stirring things up to make it right. To help educate people, inform people, sensitize people. Because you, too, can do something. You cannot sit on the sideline and be silent.”
Representative John Lewis
“Love is work. Love is struggle. Love is hard. I’m working to try to live your example, and King’s example, and Christ’s example of radical love. Love that is risky. Love that is dangerous. Love that is hard. Love that gets mocked. Love that gets heckled. Love that gets beaten. But to continue in the way that you do every single day. I witness it and I watch it. That you live with that humility and love of all, and that strident activism to cause good trouble.”
Senator Cory Booker
Radical love. Good trouble. Words to live by.