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COMMENTARY: MLK’s beautiful sentiments are still relevant

On Monday, as we honor and remember the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., we are reminded that he was a master in prose. He had an uncanny ability to cut straight to the heart of the matter with thought-provoking statements — while he evoked beautiful sentiments, he didn’t mince words.

In this moment, there’s one question that comes to mind: “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’ ”

As governor and as a legislator, we are dedicated to service for all those to whom home means Nevada. Dr. King left an indelible imprint on our nation’s history as a civil rights leader who fought to end racial inequality, eradicate racial segregation and advance human rights for all people.

He led our society through a period of civil and social unrest and instilled in us that change is possible through civil discourse and nonviolent demonstrations. The holiday serves as a time to reflect on his work and to relight the fire within us to continue to create change through these memories.

His legacy and many of the issues he fought against have hit close to home, particularly in the past two years, as this nation has continued to see a period of social unrest and continued threats to our democracy and our way of life.

In Nevada, we are fighting back on both fronts.

At a time when state legislatures across the country are attempting to roll back access to the polls, Nevada continues to push forward with proven strategies that make voting more accessible and secure. Voting is the most powerful nonviolent tool we have in our democracy, and new laws that we enacted together last year will ensure that our democratic process remains in place.

We have seen the gaping cracks in our society that are a result of fundamentally flawed systems — these cracks are painful, but they can be healed.

As a community we need not be afraid to speak truth to power and to build in solidarity toward a more just society. We must embrace our cultural differences while acknowledging that no matter our skin color, our religious beliefs or cultural traditions, we are all human beings. From there we can have an honest dialogue which will lead to the healing and change that our community needs.

This is not something that can be done alone. It’s going to take all of us working together with you — to heal, to bring justice, to make Nevada a warm and welcoming place for all. Please know you have that commitment from us to be leaders and partners in this work.

Steve Sisolak is the governor of Nevada. Daniele Monroe Moreno is a member of the Nevada Assembly and chair of the Nevada Black Legislative Caucus. Both are Democrats.

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