Martin Luther King Jr.
August 28th, 1963.
250,000 people marched in Washington D.C.
All to hear ONE man speak. Some call him MLK, old friends call him M.L. and new friends call him Martin Luther King Jr.
I however, refer to him as the King.
To be apart of something that is bigger than yourself is by far the most inspiring action one can take. As a national civil rights leader and economic justice activist he changed the world for the better. The most powerful aspect of his movements is the fact that nothing was done with hate, but rather LOVE.
Here is an excerpt from a speech the King gave in 1956:
For many years I have longed to be able to come to see you. I have heard so much of you and of what you are doing. I have heard of the fascinating and astounding advances that you have made in the scientific realm. I have heard of your dashing subways and flashing airplanes. Through your scientific genius you have been able to dwarf distance and place time in chains. You have been able to carve highways through the stratosphere. So in your world you have made it possible to eat breakfast in New York City and dinner in Paris, France. I have also heard of your sky scraping buildings with their prodigious towers steeping heavenward. I have heard of your great medical advances, which have resulted in the curing of many dread plagues and diseases, and thereby prolonged your lives and made for greater security and physical well-being. All of that is marvelous. You can do so many things in your day that I could not do in the Greco-Roman world of my day. In your age you can travel distances in one day that took me three months to travel. That is wonderful. You have made tremendous strides in the area of scientific and technological development.
But America, as I look at you from afar, I wonder whether your moral and spiritual progress has been commensurate with your scientific progress. It seems to me that your moral progress lags behind your scientific progress. Your poet Thoreau used to talk about “improved means to an unimproved end.” How often this is true. You have allowed the material means by which you live to outdistance the spiritual ends for which you live. You have allowed your mentality to outrun your morality. You have allowed your civilization to outdistance your culture. Through your scientific genius you have made of the world a neighborhood, but through your moral and spiritual genius you have failed to make of it a brotherhood. So America, I would urge you to keep your moral advances abreast with your scientific advances.”
When I was little, I would observe the holiday not knowing exactly why. Now, I celebrate the holiday to better the people and community around me through his accomplishments. In honor of Martin Luther King Jr., do something to enhance others. Whether it be big or small, the action is appreciated.