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Guided Missles; Misguided Men

My friend in Georgia, Frank Bird, had this quote from Martin Luther King on his blog today. It captured my attention partly because of Dr. King’s ability to pack a lot in a phrase, and partly because this past week I was in Montgomery, Alabama–ground zero for much of the civil rights movement of the 60s.

 “The means by which we live have outdistanced the ends for which we live. Our scientific power has outrun our spiritual power. We have guided missiles and misguided men.” Martin Luther King, Jr.

Dr. King was killed in the prime of his life–not even 40 years of age. Apparently, however, he lived long enough to leave a mark, and that’s good.

As a kid growing up in Abilene, Texas, I was acutely aware of the problem of guided missles and A-bombs. We had regular A-bomb drills in the school as often as they have fire drills today. The drill I remember the most was called “Duck and Cover,” a drill where you squatted with your face tucked in and your arms and hands covering your head. There really wasn’t much of a point in the drill, however. By 1956, Dyess Air Force Base (the 7th Bomb Wing) there in Abilene was a Strategic Air Command base. Had we ever gotten it in on with the Russians (the ONLY enemy I knew of), Abilene would be one of their guided missle targets. “Duck and Cover” might as well be “Duck and Sizzle” for all the difference it would have made in a real conflict.

Sometimes it seems paramount to human nature that folks struggle to pull themselves free from one mess only to bog down in another. Perhaps if the world stage were more like a children’s playground, we’d all be getter “guided.”

 James Sutton, Psychologist  www.docspeak.com

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February 10, 2007 - Posted by | Counselors, Educators, Inspirational, Parents

1 Comment »

  1. Doc,
    This is very well written. I love your last line “Perhaps if the world stage were more like a children’s playground, we’d all be better “guided”.

    This is very true. The more child minded we could be, the more peaceful we would be and not buy into the maddness which we have created.

    Like

    Comment by tobeme | February 10, 2007 | Reply


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