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Power To The People

Paper type: Essay
Pages: 4 (829 words)
Categories: Democracy,People,Power,State
Downloads: 18
Views: 3

King and Suu Kyi: Power to the People Martin Luther King Jr. was serving as a pastor in Montgomery, Alabama. He led a boycott against the city’s bus lines. And founded the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC). Aung Suu Kyi was the daughter of Burma’s most revered hero. She spent most of her life outside her native country. While Aung Suu Kyi lived in Burma, she fought for the democracy in her country where she believed that the essential elements of democracy are fairness, respect for human rights that’s always been present in every citizen in Burma.

When she became a strong political leader and a democracy advocate, she changed the English version of the country’s name from Burma to Myanmar. And she also formed a pollical party called the National League for Democracy (NLD).

Martin Luther King Jr.’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail” (1963) and Aung Suu Kyi’s “In Quest of Democracy” (1990) illustrated a democratic country should recognize the necessity of equality and unity.

Their writings touched people by showing how highly flawed their societies truly were and with these exceptional essays, they’ve been awarded a Nobel Prize for Peace. They spoke their religion and non-violence throughout their pieces for the people around them. Even though they came from different countries, they have similar ideas on how they want to change their countries. Aung Suu Kyi explains the role of government in Buddhist scripture and the ten duties of Kingship in the Buddhist tradition to support her cause throughout her essay. “The Buddhist view of the world tells that when society fell from its original state of purity into moral and social chaos a king was elected to restore peace and justice” (445). She also stated that the view of kingship does not invest the ruler with the divine right to govern the realm as he pleases. He is expected to “observe the Four Assistances to the People, and to be guided by enormous other codes of conduct such as the Twelve Practices of Rulers, the Six Attributes of Leaders, the Eight Virtues of Kings and the Four Ways to Overcome Peril”(445). Suu Kyi goes on to explain the Ten Duties of Kings and how they relate to modern democracy. “The Ten Duties of Kings are widely known and generally accepted as a yardstick which could be applied just as well to modern government as to the first monarch of the world” (445). She mentions what each of duties is: liberality, morality, self- sacrifice, integrity, kindness, austerity, non-violence, forbearance and non-opposition (to the will of the people).

Along with referencing religion to support his cause, King also promoted true democracy. Dr. King stated by pointing out other religious figures and famous people who were strong at their teachings and considered as extremists.

Was not Jesus an extremist in full love- “Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, pray for them that despitefully use you.” Was not Amos an extremist for justice- “Let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream”. Was not Paul an extremist for the gospel of Jesus Christ- “I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus.” Was not Martin Luther an extremist- “Here I stand: I can do none other so help me God.” Was not John Bunyan an extremist- “I will stay in jail to the end of my days before I make a butchery of my conscience. Was not Abraham Lincoln Thomas Jefferson an extremist- “We hold these truths to be self- evident, that all men are created equal.”

However, I believed and considered that King was an extremist because he was fighting for equal rights not only for the people in Birmingham but for all the country as well. For us to see the two laws, King explains with a religious reference. Saint Augustine state that “An unjust law is no law at all” (430). To put it in the terms of Saint Thomas Aquinas “An unjust law is a human law that is not rooted in eternal and natural law” (430).” A just law is a man-made code that squares with the moral law or the law of God. Any law that uplifts human personality is just. Any law that degrades human personality is unjust” (430).

Both King and Suu Kyi has the same goal for their people in their beloved home. They both knew how important for their people to have the same rights as everyone else. That even though they were imprisoned they never stop to think a way to help their people. And through their essay they put a mark not only in Burma and Birmingham Alabama but the whole world.

Works Cited

  • Suu Kyi, Aung San. “In Quest of Democracy.” Reading the World: Ideas that Matter, edited by Michael Austin, 3rd ed., Norton, 2015, pp. 442-448.
  • King, Martin Luther, Jr. “Letter from Birmingham Jail.” Reading the World: Ideas that Matter, edited by Michael Austin, 3rd ed., Norton, 2015, pp. 425-441

Cite this essay

Power To The People. (2019, Nov 26). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/power-to-the-people-essay

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