It is not the violence of the few that scares me, it is the silence of the many.Martin Luther King
By Daniel Dias
Martin Luther King was an American activist who raised many relevant racial and social issues.
He was a man who defended equality, who was not afraid to spread his ideas, even though in his time they were not that well accepted by a large part of the population.
In this quote he wanted to make us reflect, in a political perspective, how silence gives room to bad, unfair and prejudiced conducts, towards others and the world.
What he was referring to still applies today. It is important not to practice silence by actively participating politically and socially.
Not doing so only feeds in to “the violence of the few” and contributes to shatter our human rights, conquered from a lot of struggle and dedication by people like Martin. The well-known activist was shot dead by those who wanted to silence him, who did not agree with his values but he stands as an inspiration for several people that keep his heart and convictions alive.
This sentence, from my point of view, can also be interpreted in another way, in a context related to violence. Silence is a criminal’s greatest asset and a classic example of this is domestic violence.
This is a much discussed topic nowadays that has been getting worse over the years. Despite all initiatives not only nationally, but also worldwide, to prevent domestic violence, there are more and more brutal cases and outcomes.
The aggressor’s power over the victim is usually resulting in her silence and it is this silence and lack of community support that feeds over to the aggressor’s control.
But we can all make a difference, we can help others, even if only to support the victims of such violence and praise them not to practice silence, not to be afraid to be free, because nobody deserves the suffering that many people go through and if the whole community is present, maybe the violence cycle can be broken.
Martin stresses attention to those who suffer in silence, the innocent, rather than celebrating the violent. I appeal to each one of us to be part of Martin Luther King’s fight: the fight against inequalities, and this begins in the action of each one of us, individually.
Whether we are victims of inequality or dreamers of a world where inequality does not prevail, we have to express what we feel and what we want. It is us, the “innocents”, who have to draw now, in the present, what Martin only dreamed of – a fair and happy world to all, despite our differences.