Author Trudy Ludwig Joins Us
Trudy Ludwig is a children’s advocate and bestselling author of eight books that help children cope with and thrive in their social world. Her newest release, The Invisible Boy, a Junior Library Guild Selection, will be available this October. Today, as we approach the 50th Anniversary of the Birmingham Church Bombing on September 15th, and we’ve just passed the 50th Anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King’s I HAVE A DREAM speech, Trudy joins us to share her thoughts about dreaming big, and the idea that it’s never too early to teach our children to value and respect all of their fellow human beings.
by Trudy Ludwig
All it takes is a quick perusal of current national and international news headlines to make the biggest dreamer in us all take stock and truly question whether Dr. Martin Luther King’s vision of “a beautiful symphony of brotherhood” will ever become a reality. After all, history has a nasty way of reminding us, time and again, that hatred has no borders. But does that mean we should give up dreaming big? More to the point, should we give up hope that our children and our children’s children can do better and be better in how we treat others—regardless of race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, and political or religious beliefs? Absolutely not! As Dr. King sagely advised us, we must have the faith to “…be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope.”
Time for a Reality Check
America has made some significant headway in civil rights since Dr. King gave his landmark speech 50 years ago. But the reality is that we can always do more. And we can always do better. Take, for example, the poor role modeling going on in the media and business world, as well as in our local and national government, schools, and homes. That and our own emotional baggage can easily skew how we view and treat those we encounter in life. Instead of judging individuals by “the content of their character,” as Dr. King aptly put it, we judge them by how we choose to see them, ignoring the fundamental truth that there are the kind and the cruel in every group of people. If we expect our kids to address and prevent hatred, prejudice, and stereotyping, we need more adults to step up to the plate and be better role models for them.
The reality is that our children aren’t just our future. They’re also our present. By encouraging them now to notice, care, and respond to the injustices they see out there in the world, we’re reinforcing the core notion that every person has value and deserves to be treated with dignity and respect. In so doing, we continue to lay the groundwork for a more just and compassionate society.
I truly believe in the power of our words and actions to plant the seeds of change in the world. It is every generation’s responsibility to refrain from passing their prejudices on to the next generation. And if we can do this, perhaps, in time, we’ll finally achieve Dr. King’s dream of a promised land.
Trudy Ludwig is a children’s advocate and bestselling author of eight books that help children cope with and thrive in their social world. Her newest release, The Invisible Boy, a Junior Library Guild Selection, will be available this October wherever books are sold. For more information about Trudy and her books, visit http://www.trudyludwig.com.
Many Thanks to Trudy Ludwig for joining us at RAoR today!
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