Beloved Community

Beloved Community
January 14, 2016 GWHS
“People fail to get along because they fear each other;
they fear each other because they don’t know each other;
they don’t know each other because they have
not communicated with each other.”
¬ – Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Dr. King believed in the power of a Beloved Community – where human decency governs the standards by which all of its members live. In his words, “our loyalties must transcend our race, our tribe, our class, and our nation.”

This is a beautiful vision. In practice, however, we live in a world where not everyone was shown the power of love or the value of our differences. We operate in a world where the color of your skin overshadows who you are, where men and women feel compelled to disguise their religion, and where differences are commonly chastised rather than celebrated.

I like to think of our school as its own beloved community – it lessens the magnitude of the challenges we are facing and allows us to focus on practicing what it means to live Dr. King’s vision.

Our George community is governed by the belief that nothing is more important than human connection. We believe that differences should be honored and that integrity overpowers hatred. We believe that students should not be defined by their circumstances, instead recognized for the effort they give. We believe that curiosity breeds potential and that “I don’t know” is a starting point. We believe that school should be a place where students are shown the power of compassion and taught that their voice has weight.

These are the standards that govern our beloved community. On Monday, as we give thanks for Dr. King’s work, I urge you to think about what governs the communities in which you belong.

Sincerely,

José Martinez | Principal
George Washington High School