by Stephanie Van Hook
Alycee Lane believes that the same spirit that guided Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s work can be awakened within us. And it can be found in a pledge. Not just any pledge. It’s a pledge that in the climax of the 1960s African American freedom struggle in Alabama included clear instructions, not just for how to behave in deed alone, but it goes further, asking volunteers to cultivate nonviolence in thought and word, too — in all of one’s relationships, even toward opponents. It’s the Kingian ideal. Author of “Nonviolence Now! Living the 1963 Birmingham Campaign’s Promise of Peace,” Lane translates the often overlooked pledge card for a contemporary audience, emphasizing the power of nonviolence as a practice in the spirit of King’s vision. I had the opportunity to ask her some questions for deeper reflection.