Courage…..50 Years Later

Photo Credit: John C. Goodwin

It takes courage to risk your public reputation……and your life………to take a stand.

50 years ago today, a courageous man entered Manhattan’s Riverside Church to say that his country was making a tremendous mistake……a mistake that ultimately cost 58,000 American troops……and 2 Million Vietnamese civilians their lives.

That courageous man gave that speech during the height of a Cold War where any attack against U.S. policy to contain communism was viewed as inappropriate……and pro-communist.

That courageous man knew that his speech would turn his civil rights allies, a President, and the nation’s media against him.

That courageous man knew that his speech would enlarge the already enormous target on his back.

That courageous man knew that he would live the remaining days of his life on Earth, ultimately 366, the subject of everyone’s hatred, in part because of his courageous stance against his country’s tremendous mistake.

So, on the 50th anniversary of that iconic and powerful speech, I salute a man that had courage.