Fifty years ago, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. gave his iconic “I have a dream” speech from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial to thousands of civil rights supporters crowding the National Mall.
“I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.”
The fact that President Obama, during his second term in office, stands in the same spot on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial to give a speech about Dr. King, says a lot about how far our country has come in the past 50 years.
While we have made great strides toward treating one another as humans, we still have a long way to go.
Laws are now in place to ensure that students aren’t turned away based on their skin color, but hate crimes and racial discrimination are still all too common. In a country that emphasizes religious freedom, some groups are stereotyped and considered more suspicious than others.
If you look closely, equal rights campaigns have been going on since Dr. King launched the ‘dream.’ Here are a few recent campaign examples:
Players and rules of the game have changed for the most part, but the ‘dream’ that Dr. King spoke of still eludes us. Think of this anniversary as an opportunity to live out the Golden Rule: no matter your race, religion and other attributes that make people unique, treat people how you would want to be treated.
Be kind to one another, and when you get the chance, do something nice for someone. Random acts of kindness make a huge impact in people’s lives. Be proud of your history, but don’t look down on others because they are different.
What inspires you about Dr. King’s speech?