"I say to you this morning that if you have never found something so dear and so precious to you that you will die for it then you aren’t fit to live. You may be thirty eight years old, as I happen to be, and one day some great opportunity stands before you and calls upon you to stand up for some great principle, some great issue, some great cause and you refuse to do it because you are afraid; you refuse to do it because you want to live longer; you’re afraid you will lose your job; or you’re afraid that you will be criticized or that you will lose your popularity; or you’re afraid that somebody will stab you, shoot at you, or bomb your house and so you refuse to take a stand. Well you may go on and live until you’re ninety, but you’re just as dead at thirty eight as you would be at ninety. And the cessation of breathing in your life is but the belated announcement of an earlier death of the spirit. You died when you refused to stand up for right. You died when you refused to stand up for truth. You died when you refused to stand up for justice."
- Martin Luther King, from a 1967 speech at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta,
titled “But if Not“.
There are things worse than death. And so there are things worth dying for. Would you know one if you saw it?