I guess I'm on a streak here lately of learning about influential people that I shamefully know very little about. A couple of days ago it was Rachel Carson, and yesterday it was Martin Luther. My task here again is not to tell you who these people are in any great detail but to encourage you to learn more about them.
When it comes to Martin Luther, is it fair to say that most of us are familiar with the name and that's about it? Perhaps we know he was a religious figure, perhaps that the Lutheran religion is named for him. But what else do you know? Did you know he told a Pope, Pope Leo X, and a King, Holy Roman Emperor Charles V, that he wouldn't retract his writings; that he was right and they were wrong? That he basically told the Pope he was irrelevant; that he translated the Bible from Latin to a language of the common people, and thus the Protestant Reformation starts with Luther?
He was a devoutly religious man and I'm an atheist but I love rebels and free thinkers. Every freedom fighter from Thomas Jefferson to Martin Luther King were inspired by Martin Luther. It could be fairly said that we as Americans owe our democracy to Luther. So take five minutes or so to become better acquainted with one of the most influential people of all time.
Up next? Cleisthenes.