Those were words that the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. composed while sitting in a Birmingham, AL jail cell on January 16, 1963.
Those words still have significance for us in the second decade of the 21st century.
As we fight, claw, protest and petition our legislators to grant us the civil rights we are due under our constitution, we review the lessons from history. We smile and gather courage from reading about the long lists of oppressed peoples who gained their precious freedoms.
While the oppression we labor under and the people we study who freed themselves from their bondage may have nuances due to the political winds at the time, severity of it and other variables, the key to winning is still consistent across time.
The oppressed have nothing to lose because the situation already as far as they are concerned is at rock bottom. They win with great leadership, unceasing labor, strategic vision, planning, prayerful contemplation, determination, and a determined indomitable will to achieve it.
As they are 'ripening the time' as the late Dr. Dorothy Height said, they are also patiently building for the future while putting unrelenting pressure on the oppressor.