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Where Do We Go from Here?: Chaos or Community? (King Legacy) (The King Legacy) Paperback – 19 May 2010


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About the Author

Minister, civil rights leader, intellectual, social reformer, and author-Martin Luther King Jr. won the Nobel Prize for peace in 1964. He was a leading spokesman for African Americans in the civil rights movement. He was ordained and appointed as an assistant pastor at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta. He preached love, equality and nonviolence. In 1963, he led a march in Washington and gave his "I Have a Dream" speech from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. His works include: Stride Toward Freedom (1958), Strength to Love (1963), Why We Can't Wait (1964). --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Amazon.com: 44 reviews
51 of 51 people found the following review helpful
Martin's last words to America : Is anyone listening ? 9 Oct. 2002
By rodog63jr - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Many of those who claim to admire Dr. King and quote from his I have a dream speech seem to have never read his books. This book is the best of all the books King has written and probably the least read. In it, Dr. King critiques himself for giving the then youthful leaders of the Black Power Movement too overly optimistic views of the progress of integration. He also presents the pros and cons of Black Power. He states the need for White America to do much more to improve race relations other than declaring racism to be wrong. He calls for the teaching of African-American history, and for the nation to focus more on helping the poor over military spending. This book should be mandatory reading for high school students, college students, teachers, public officials and business leaders.
23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
Civil Rights 1967 12 Jun. 2005
By Gregory Adams - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Dr. King's penultimate book provides a snapshot of where we were in 1967. Two turning points had been reached.
First, his program of nonviolent direct action was clearly winning the struggle against old fashioned southern segregation, and Dr. King was looking toward the next step. He believed that the next logical step toward setting people free was a massive government program addressing the problem of poverty.

Second, within the civil rights movement, a "black power" mentality was gaining prominence. Some argued that whites should be excluded from the civil rights movement, and that nonviolence should be abandoned. Dr. King insisted that this approach would only balkanize our country, having disastrous effect, especially on blacks.

As with his other books, the author's brilliance, his scholarship, and his Christian love all come through.

It would be best to read "Stride Toward Freedom" and "Why We Can't Wait" before reading this one.
29 of 31 people found the following review helpful
Civil Rights 1967 28 July 2002
By Gregory Adams - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Dr. King's penultimate book provides a snapshot of where we were in 1967. Two turning points had been reached.

First, his program of nonviolent direct action was clearly winning the struggle against old fashioned southern segregation, and Dr. King was looking toward the next step. He believed that the next logical step toward setting people free was a massive government program addressing the problem of poverty.

Second, within the civil rights movement, a "black power" mentality was gaining prominence. Some argued that whites should be excluded from the civil rights movement, and that nonviolence should be abandoned. Dr. King insisted that this approach would only balkanize our country, having disastrous effect, especially on blacks.

As with his other books, the author's brilliance, his scholarship, and his Christian love all come through.

It would be best to read "Stride Toward Freedom" and "Why We Can't Wait" before reading this one.
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr: A Revolutionary...And Radical, and Not a Dreamer!!! 31 Jan. 2012
By The Tower with the Power - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I recommend that anyone, who still believes that the late, great Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was only a "dreamer" and an "integrationist", and not a creative, strategic thinker, and genuine radical and revolutionary, in the image and spirit of El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz, Marcus Garvey, and others, purchase, from Amazon.com, and then read, re-read, and think deeply about, "Where Do We Go From Here: Community or Chaos".

Since his assassination on April 4, 1968, most Americans, Black and White, have fond memories of Dr. King's famous "I Have A Dream" speech, which was the highlight of the August, 1963, March on Washington and rally at the Lincoln Memorial.

While no one can deny the greatness of that historic speech, what most people don't know is that, a few years later, Dr. King repudiated his "I Have A Speech Dream" speech as hopelessly naive because, at that time, he did not realize that America's "individualism, militarism, and racism" was tantamount to a "nightmare", deeply embedded in the fabric of American culture, politics, economic and social policy.

After the March on Washington, and the "I Have A Dream" speech, King and the Civil Rights movement, aided and abetted by the commitment, political courage and leadership of President, Lyndon Baines Johnson, scored powerful victories with the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Voting Rights Act of 1965.

But, almost concurrent with these historic legislative victories, urban ghettos exploded in riots, in 1964 and 1965, demonstrating to King, and the other leaders of the Civil Rights Movement, that demonstrations, marches, majestic, soaring rhetoric, and even federal legislation, was not going to be enough to change, on a fundamental basis, the predominant and prevailinig cultural, economic, political and social values and priorities in America.

A Southern backlash, against the Civil Right Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965, urban riots in Northern cities, in spite of two major civil rights bills, the failure of King to integrate the suburbs, in and around Chicago, and the escalation of the Vietnam War, compelled him to take three months, during the latter part of 1966, and the first part of 1967, to write "Where Do We Go From Here: Community or Chaos".

King's goal was to outline and communicate the 2nd and most important phase of what he called the Movement. In this, his last and most powerful book, King set out the bold and radical changes, in American thought and action, that all Americans, Black and White, in and out of the civil rights movement, needed to take, in business, culture, economics, education, politics, and religion, to achieve what he called "a revolutionary re-ordering of American values and priorites.

Believe it or not, in this book, Dr. King deals with business, especially the power of boycotts, economics, education, jobs and job training, and the need for thoughtul and strategic engagement in politics, especially by Blacks, in an incredible amount of surprisingly bold and radical detail.

One of the major things Dr. King committed to do in this book was the momentous decision that probably led to his cowardly assassination, at the Lorraine Motel, in Memphis, Tennessee: the decision to come out, aggressively and boldy, against President Lyndon B. Johnson, the United States government, and the expensive and murderdous war in Vietnam.

But, at this point in Dr. King's career as a Minister of the Gospel, Civil Rights Leader, and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, as he said on the last day on this Earth, he had "been to the Mountaintop, and had seen the Promised Land".

He was not afraid to, as he always put it, "Bear the Cross", so that the Americans, who live each day, working to achieve his vision of "the Beloved Community", could, one day, "wear the crown".

After reading this book, it's up to each of us to to take a long, hard look at what we have and have not done in our own communities, and decide whether, based on the bold, radical, and transformative ideas propounded by Dr. King in "Where Do We Go From Here: Community or Chaos", has led to success, which is community, or failure, which is chaos.

Even though most of us, especially our government and politicians, have not heeded Dr. King's warnings about the cost of not transforming the values and priorities of America, which, according to King, is "spiritual death", if we read and follow his advice, it's still not too late!!!
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Where Do We Go from Here 2 Dec. 2012
By fredyt123 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is Dr. King's last book prior to his assassination. The book provides insight into Dr. King's thinking about the victories won during the Civil Rights struggles. It provides a critical analysis of why and how a group of people rose up, struggled, gained support but saw the United States reneg on funding or implementing programs necessary to uplift citizens it had denigrated.

The book is an easy read, but it has an academic-feel. For those who have listened to Dr. King and are familiar with his communication style, you will glide from page to page. For those not familiar be prepared to find words and phrases that are unique to people considered more professorial. The book is a must have for your library as it comes from Dr. King's mouth and gives a better understanding of his thought process in 1967, just months before the fatal date, April 4, 1968.
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