Moreover, I am cognizant of the interrelatedness of all communities and states. I cannot sit idly by in Atlanta and not be concerned about what happens in Birmingham. Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.

from Martin Luther King, Jr – Letter From Birmingham Jail on Rap Genius

Meaning

King accurately points out that the segregation and racism occurring in the South was a failure of the ideals America supposedly upheld; he later quotes Lincoln:

This nation cannot survive half slave and half free.

And Jefferson:

We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal..

To effectively show that in order for America to truly be the land of the free, all of its inhabitants must enjoy freedom.

This quote refers human rights, the idea that there exist a basic set of rights inherent to all human beings. If one person is denied these interrelated rights (regardless of their nationality, place of residence, sex, national or ethnic origin, race, religion, language, etc), then this fundamental idea has been attacked, and all are in danger of having their rights taken away.

As the Apostle Paul said, in 1 Corinthians 12.26

If one man suffers, all suffer together with it.

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