Teaching Respect for All, on MLK Day, and Every Day

Posted by Ashli L. Savoy
January 16, 2012

Today, we celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., one of the visionary leaders of the civil rights movement, and recipient of the 1964 Nobel Peace prize. Every year around this time we are reminded of his amazing vision and dream as his legendary speeches play on the television and radio, and as his well-known words flood our Facebook and Twitter timelines.

Just 45 years ago, Dr. King said, "Peace is not merely a distant goal that we seek, but a means by which we arrive at that goal." Those words immediately remind me that there are basic fundamentals necessary for building real and lasting peace. This year, as we celebrate Dr. King, I am a part of a team that is gearing up for a big event to launch an initiative that I think Dr. King would be proud of -- "Teaching Respect for All."

The initiative is a partnership between the United States, Brazil, and the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) that will create an educational curriculum to teach about respect, human rights, and how we can learn to appreciate each other's differences while treating one another with dignity. The initiative will incorporate important peace building concepts such as reducing intolerance, violence and discrimination into an educational project that will reach young minds all over the world.

As we launch this initiative, we hope to ignite a global discussion among young people on the meaning of respect and how we can find ways to discuss our differences. Watch the video in the player above to hear Assistant Secretary for International Organization Affairs Esther Brimmer's thoughts on respect, dignity, and tolerance and join the discussion on Twitter using #Dignity4All.

Editor's Note: Assistant Secretary Brimmer travels to Paris, France January 17 to help launch the "Teaching Respect for All" curriculum.



District Of Columbia, USA
January 18, 2012

Bailey in Washington, D.C. writes:

I am so happy that this project is happening! I am an LGBT American & I was incredibly moved by Secretary Clinton's speech on LGBT rights in Geneva during Human Rights Day. This initiative, Teaching Respect for All, is so important for young people to be educated on tolerance & respect for all. Thank you! This is the type of program that truly makes America the best Nation I know.

South Africa
February 2, 2012

Wilson in South Africa writes:

cheers for that! Your post has brightened my day and thus i can safely make a comment


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