Sometimes history in retrospect has a habit of skipping over the slow evolution and jumping straight to the struggle, conflict and resolution. There is a desire to encapsulate history and events into a sort of "now it's here and now it's not" approach, not realizing the overwhelming obstacles that were faced during the times of insurmountable odds and how those times seemed terminal, the odds against change just seemed too high.
In the case of this interview, the panel program Meet The Press from April 17, 1960, the method of non-violent protest was just evolving and, much like the Occupy Movement of today, was met with a goodly degree of skepticism and incredulity on the parts of mainstream media. Much as we are led to believe, and told repeatedly, that mainstream media is a bastion of Liberalism, it is simply and historically not true. Never has been and never was. What's important to realize is that Dr. King knew this was, not just a change of laws and attitudes, but this was a change of spirit and morals. And he knew such an inside job wasn't going to happen at the snap of a finger.
Dr. Martin Luther King: “This doesn’t come overnight. The non-violent way doesn’t bring about miracles in a few hours, in a few days, or in a few years for that matter. I think at first, the first reaction of the oppressor when the oppressed people rise up against the system of injustice is an attitude of bitterness. But I do believe that if the non-violent resisters continue to follow the way of non-violence, they eventually get over to the hearts and souls of the former oppressors. And I think it eventually brings about that redemption that we dream of. Of course I can’t estimate how many people we’ve touched so far. This is impossible because it’s an inner process. But I’m sure something is stirring in the minds and the souls of people. And I’m sure that many people are thinking anew on this basic problem of human relations.”
And that's what it's really all about.
Relevant then - imperative now.