During the MLK Memorial Observance, I got a chance to check out the Dr. King Children's Essay and Fine Arts Exhibit. If you're not familiar with this art gallery it happens every year. This year, as in prior years, we hope to honor Dr. King's memory by inviting schools to submit student art and essays that reflect Dr. King's teaching.

Schools submitted original artwork illustrating Dr. King's Six Principles and Steps of Nonviolence or essays celebrating Dr. King's birthday from students enrolled in any K-12 program.

PRINCIPLE ONE:

Kingian Nonviolence is Not for Cowards. Nonviolence has a complete disrespect for violence. It will not adopt violent tactics to reach its goal and will avoid violence in resolving conflicts and problems.

Dr. King stressed the importance of resisting violence in any form. He preferred and recommended nonviolence because it represented a more humane, noble and honorable method in the path to justice.

PRINCIPLE ONE:

Nonviolence is affirmatively standing not only against what is wrong but also for what is right and just.

PRINCIPLE TWO:
The Beloved Community is a World of Peace with Justice.
The Beloved Community is a framework for developing a future in which one can deal effectively with unjust conditions.
The "Ends and Means" is dealt with by this principle. You cannot achieve just ends by unjust means; you cannot use violent means to achieve peaceful ends.

PRINCIPLE THREE:

Attack Injustice, Not Persons Doing Unjust Deeds.
Humor, anger and indignation about conditions were the focus of Dr. King's energy and attention. People are not the problem; what must be changed are the conditions under which some people operate.
Focusing anger and indignation on personalities is not only violent, but often produces more violence or apathy about the real problems and conditions.

PRINCIPLE FOUR:

Accept Suffering Without Retaliation for the Sake of the Cause to Achieve a Goal.
Suffering is not to be confused with further harm to one's self or "self-victimization." Acceptance of harsh and unmerited punishment for a just cause helps the individual and the community grow in spiritual and humanitarian dimensions.
Willingness to endure hardship for a clearly defined just cause can have an impact on those committing acts of violence as well as on the larger community.

PRINCIPLE FIVE:

Avoid Internal Violence of the Spirit as Well as External Physical Violence.
Our attitudes and commitment to practicing nonviolence, when faced with violence or issues, are communicated through our actions, which in turn are determined by our attitudes.
Body language as well as verbal expression communicate our real feelings and thoughts about a particular situation. Internal conflicts and violent feelings color these expressions.

PRINCIPLE SIX:

The Universe is on the Side of Justice.Society is oriented to a just sense of order in the universe. Nonviolence is in tune with this concept, and the movement must strike this chord in society.
The nonviolent resister has deep faith that justice will eventually win.

Here are some of the fine art that I saw on display.

Each school will receive a Certificate of Appreciation for participating in this worthwhile educational event in the Spring of 2018. As part of the celebration, all entries will be exhibited on the Concourse level of the Empire State Plaza, until February 28th. If you get a chance go by the Empire State Plaza and support our youth, its free.