Eureka! Factory

Home » activism » Returning Hate for Hate Multiples Hate – Say it Again…

Returning Hate for Hate Multiples Hate – Say it Again…


Yesterday, I read a great quote attributed to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. that came across a feed from TeachingTolerance.org . Of course, I shared the quote with friends, and then decided to do a little blog piece on it on my writing site, since it went along with a previous post on the power of love (notes).  But like the responsible writer I like to be, I thought I’d better confirm it first.  I found the actual quote and the original source, and blogged accordingly – just three little paragraphs, which ultimately confirmed the most meaningful heart of MLKs words – a timely sentiment as thoughtful Americans weighed their feelings on news of Osama Bin Laden’s death: Returning violence for violence multiplies violence, 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.  

This humble little blog – which on a good day maybe gets 20 visits – has been slammed by nearly a 1000 hits in less than 24 hours, with most visitors arriving after searching on the same string of words from the quote: “returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars.”  When I look at my stat site report it’s as if hundreds of school children have been ordered to write those words hundreds of times on a blackboard.

Returning hate for hate multiples hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. 

Returning hate for hate multiples hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars.

Returning hate for hate multiples hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars.

Maybe we should keep saying it again and again, over and over until we finally come to see the truth of those words.

That mild paraphrase of Dr. King’s words, it turns out,  is credited by Megan Mcardle, in the Atlantic (Anatomy of a Fake Quotation), to 24 year old Jessica Dovey, a middle school English teacher in Kobe, Japan, who posted her gentle thoughts on her Facebook page – “I will mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy. “, concluding with Dr. King’s quote.   In the strange and convoluted tale of all things Internet, her comments somehow found their way to Penn Jillette, the tall loquacious half of the Penn and Teller comedy duo, who tweeted the quote, by now missing the quotation marks that distinguished Ms. Dovey’s personal reflections from Dr. King’s actual remarks (or rather her light variant of his words) to his over 1.5 million Facebook followers.   Within 24 hours, says Mcardle, the quote brought back over 9000 hits on Google – about 10% of which apparently landed here.   I’m honored.

And I’m hopeful.  Maybe, just maybe, one of those 1000 folks will take the time to read a few other things here and perhaps be moved to put MLKs words into action with my Power of Love Notes Challenge . Mcardle reports that Ms. Dovey’s FB status now reads “…I’m somewhere between nervous and embarrassed and honored… I really hope I haven’t said anything he wouldn’t agree with..Only what I feel in my heart. ” I think Ms Dovey’s original post was a love note to humanity and she has nothing to be embarrassed about.

Repeat after Ms. Dovey: “Returning hate for hate multiples 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.” 

Now that you know the full story, do something good with it.

Advertisements

Proud Producer of

Proud Partners of

%d bloggers like this: