Do You Have a Dream?

Dear Reader:

One big difference in Martin Luther King’s memorial celebration is that it is not about a day off (even though for many students and teachers alike, it is gratefully just that…. ) but it is a day “on” of service.

The Martin Luther King Jr. holiday on Jan. 20, 2020, marks the 25th anniversary of the day of service that celebrates the Civil Rights leader’s life and legacy. Observed each year on the third Monday in January as “a day on, not a day off,” MLK Day is the only federal holiday designated as a national day of service to encourage all Americans to volunteer to improve their communities. The Corporation for National and Community service has been charged to lead this effort for the last quarter century.

I loved the creativity of Jakie’s teachers in his four-year-old class at school. They took pictures of all the children sleeping during nap time…then they told them about Martin Luther King, Jr….who he was and what he wanted for every child in this country…they shared all his thoughts bout equality, love, and respect in his famous “I Have a Dream” speech.

Then each child was to draw a symbol of love or peace and give the teacher his/her personal dream for a world without hate. Mandy sent me Jakie’s drawing late yesterday afternoon. As soon as I saw it…I teared up…*that is what happens to me when I am not feeling my perkiest…my emotions have a tendency to dominate. (Besides my white cell count still being very low…I have the cough, cold congestion in my chest requiring a chest x-ray… that is only adding on to my inertia and overall sense of fatigue.)

The comments and pictures of Jake and his classmates were so sweet…the innocence of his little poster choked me up….how I wish I could freeze all my grandchildren so they never have to see or feel hatred towards another individual.

In fact…I sent a note back to Mandy asking….”At what age do you think children learn to hate? ” When is it too late to stop the avalanche…because we all know it is generational, as well as, widespread through news, comments on talk shows, etc.

“I have a dream that I can love everyone in the world.” Oh Jakie…how I wish hatred could be erased from the world in which we live…and if each person in it would love everyone else, as in your dream…it would disappear over night.”

When I rhetorically asked Mandy at what age did children learn to hate did she think…suddenly the lyrics from South Pacific- “You Have to Be Carefully Taught” came flooding back into my memory.

Verse 1]
You’ve got to be taught to hate and fear
You’ve got to be taught from year to year
It’s got to be drummed in your dear little ear
You’ve got to be carefully taught

[Verse 2]
You’ve got to be taught to be afraid
Of people whose eyes are oddly made
And people whose skin is a diff’rent shade
You’ve got to be carefully taught

[Verse 3]
You’ve got to be taught before it’s too late
Before you are six or seven or eight
To hate all the people your relatives hate
You’ve got to be carefully taught


So until tomorrow…”Inch by inch…row by row…see how peace and love can grow!”

Anne and I went to visit our wonderful Maine friend, Sherry and adorable husband, Bob, yesterday at their drop-dead gorgeous newly renovated home on John’s Island. It was chilly yesterday but the blues in water and skies were so vivid…it was hard to differentiate between them.

And speaking of blues…I  told Anne that I had seen a morning glory blooming last week on my fence…latest that had ever happened…and Anne looked up and there was a beautiful periwinkle morning glory smiling down on us.

On the way out we had to laugh…love the placement of mail boxes in front of this yard…this resident certainly has his priorities set in correspondence! 🙂 Love creative people!!!!!!!!!!

About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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3 Responses to Do You Have a Dream?

  1. Rachel Edwards says:

    Oh what a wonderful world it would be without hate. I have noticed that a lot of parents will not allow their children to say that they hate something or someone…hopefully that might be a tiny step in the right direction. The song from South Pacific is spot on…unfortunately. Jakie’s teachers did a wonderful activity and hopefully one that the children will remember. I loved visiting with you and I feel so comfortable with you that I almost asked for a blanket so that both of us could have taken a nap. Love you and hope yoj feel better soon.


    • Becky Dingle says:

      I would have loved it…a blanket party! Another time! If not saying the word “hate” could stop the feelings behind it… “What a beautiful world” it would be.


  2. Patty Knight says:

    Love Jakie’s picture and his dream. The mailboxes made me laugh:):)

    On Sat, Jan 18, 2020 at 6:01 AM Chapel of Hope Stories wrote:

    > Becky Dingle posted: ” Dear Reader: One big difference in Martin Luther > King’s memorial celebration is that it is not about a day off (even though > for many students and teachers alike, it is gratefully just that…. ) but > it is a day “on” of service. The Martin Luther” >


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