The death of one

May 3rd, 2011

”I mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy. Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.”

–anonymous (often attributed to Martin Luther King, Jr.)

Seen many times today.

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  1. Adolf

    If only we loved Hitler and the Nazi’s more, WWII could have been avoided.

    Reply

  2. MartinLuther_King

    [citation needed]

    Reply

  3. Gerfried Fuchs

    Amen, dear friend, Amen.

    Reply

  4. MatrixFrog

    http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2011/05/out-of-osamas-death-a-fake-quotation-is-born/238220/

    It’s a nice quote though.

    Reply

    John Goerzen Reply:

    Thanks. I’ve corrected the citation. I stand by the sentiment though.

    Reply

    Kephas Reply:

    Actually, part of it is genuine:

    “Why should we love our enemies? The first reason is fairly obvious. Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that. Hate multiplies hate, violence multiplies violence, and toughness multiplies toughness in a descending spiral of destruction. So when Jesus says ‘Love your enemies,’ he is setting forth a profound and ultimately inescapable admonition. Have we not come to such an impasse in the modern world that we must love our enemies — or else? The chain reaction of evil — hate begetting hate, wars producing more wars — must be broken or we shall be plunged into the dark abyss of annihilation.”

    – Martin Luther King, Jr., Strength to Love (1963; Reprint Minneapolis: Fortress, 1981), 52-53.

    Reply

  5. tomás zerolo

    Having seen images of folks rejoicing at Times Square in the papers this morning (which turned my stomach upside down), I say THANK YOU for this bit of reason.

    Reply

  6. Np237

    Not only is feasting on the death of someone a disgusting behavior, but those people have really no reason to rejoice.

    Bin Laden no longer was the leader of active terrorist cells. He had been hiding for years, and in the meantime, the islamic revolution he dreamed of became a huge democratic wind that is now blowing in many countries. Now, he was just offered death as a martyr, moving back his movement to the front news, and putting all western countries at risk of revenge from other terrorist cells.

    What a good reason to throw a party.

    Reply

  7. Mike

    The first version was apparently:

    I mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy.

    “Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.” — mlk

    People copying it managed to add the original comment to the quote.

    Reply

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