The U.S. Constitution, drafted in 1787 and ratified by three-fifths of the thirteen ex-colonies in 1788, was the first such charter in the world and the longest lasting. Considered by scholars a work of political genius, it nonetheless contains serious flaws, such as support for slavery. Its actualization in the American political system, privileging order over justice and stability over change, has failed to resolve systemic crises, above all the tyranny of white supremacy.
Activist historian Stewart Burns, is the only major Martin Luther King Jr. biographer who participated in the Black Freedom Movement, including the 1963 March on Washington. His background includes many years of nonviolent activism organizing for justice and peace that has been enlightened by thirty years studying Dr. King’s leadership and the Black Movement. From forming a high school civil rights committee, to organizing anti-Vietnam War protests and resisting the draft, to protesting nuclear power and first-strike nuclear weapons, to fostering interracial communication at Stanford, Williams, and other colleges, he has devoted his life to teaching and practicing Kingian “soul force.” Dr. Burns is Professor and Chair of Ethical & Creative Leadership, as well as Faculty in Martin Luther King Jr. Studies at Union Institute & University's Interdisciplinary Ph.D. Program.