Remembering Dr. Martin Luther King and his effect on race relations

By Josh Resnek


If you have ever visited the Lincoln Memorial in Washington DC, then you might have noticed there is an inscription about way up the granite stairs leading to the memorial.

The inscription reads: I HAVE A DREAM MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. There is also inscribed in the marble the date of the event memorialized with an impressive inscription.

The famous inscription noting where MLK stood.

It was right there on that spot in front of Lincoln’s impressive statue in 1964 that MLK delivered his triumphant speech during the historic March on Washington when 250,000 mostly Black men, women and children travelled to Washington DC to speak out against segregation when race relations were literally on the rocks.

The speech King delivered, which many of us can remember well, is called the “I Have A Dream Speech. It is considered one of the epic, notable, brilliant and compelling speeches of the 20th Century and with good reason.

King brought 250,000 people to Washington DC to plead for their rights while at the same time to implore officials to end the segregation that was so corrosively ugly and damaging during that decade in American history.

The setting for the speech on the steps of the Lincoln memorial, within view of Congress, the reflecting pool and the White House on the National Mall in the centre of Washington D.C. made the speech an international spectacle. Dr King called it hallowed ground. It is no wonder that this speech has gone down in American history as one of the seminal moments in the life and times of our democracy.

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The death of John Lewis

The death of John Lewis, one of America’s great remaining civil rights heroes to his peoples, ends a life devoted to freeing black people from the shackles of racism and hate.

He was beaten severely and repeatedly until he was bloody by angry whites as a young man leading the civil rights movement during the 1960’s.

All he wanted to do was to walk over a bridge, or sit on a bus, or eat at a lunch counter or to enter a public library where whites ruling the roost down South said he had no right to do.

When that era passed, and with Martin Luther King already gone, he got himself elected to Congress where he became a giant of a man, and someone to be dealt with and to be listened to, and to be emulated.

Mind you, his sacrifices didn’t end racism.

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