I would rather die than hate you

  • for double-choir SATBSATB unaccompanied

  • Duration flexible

Words

by Martin Luther King

Text

words from a sermon given by Martin Luther King at Dexter Avenue Baptist Church, Montgomery, Alabama, 17 November 1957
complete text online (January 2018) at:
http://kingencyclopedia.stanford.edu/encyclopedia/documentsentry/doc_loving_your_enemies

... hate for hate only intensifies the existence of hate and evil in the universe. If I hit you and you hit me
and I hit you back and you hit me back and go on, you see, that goes on ad infinitum. It just never ends.
Somewhere somebody must have a little sense, and that’s the strong person. The strong person is
the person who can cut off the chain of hate, the chain of evil. And that is the tragedy of hate,
that it doesn’t cut it off. It only intensifies the existence of hate and evil in the universe.
Somebody must have religion enough and morality enough to cut it off and inject within the very
structure of the universe that strong and powerful element of love.
... Men must see that force begets force, hate begets hate, toughness begets toughness.
And it is all a descending spiral, ultimately ending in destruction for all and everybody.
Somebody must have sense enough and morality enough to cut off the chain of hate
and the chain of evil in the universe. And you do that by love.
... So this morning, as I look into your eyes, and into the eyes of all of my brothers in Alabama
and all over America and over the world, I say to you, "I love you. I would rather die than hate you."

Categories

choral - mixed voices unaccompanied.