Nearly 50 years after Martin Luther King Jr.’s death, the nation still celebrates the impact he made fighting against black discrimination. For MLK Day on January 16th, over 1000 people showed up in Old Town Fort Collins to join in the MLK Day March [source http://source.colostate.edu/mlk-day-march-celebration-jan-16/]. The March ended at CSU with powerful poetry and essay readings, showing that King’s dream is still alive today.
Martin Luther King Jr. was born Michael King Jr. in Atlanta, Georgia in 1929. King was an American Baptist minister but is better known for his role as a civil rights activist who practiced nonviolent protesting. In 1955, he led the Montgomery bus Boycott and founded the Southern Christian Leadership Conference just two years later.
King’s speeches and letters, including the Letter from a Birmingham Jail, still have a lasting influence among the literary community. During the 1963 March on Washington, King spoke about his longstanding dream and the future he saw for America: “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.”
One year after the March on Washington, President Johnson passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964 that prohibited racial discrimination. That same year, King won the Nobel Peace Prize for his civil rights activism and fight against the Jim Crow laws. He was the youngest man to receive the Nobel at the age of thirty-five.
Martin Luther King Jr had a dream that saw all men as truly equal. His words still incite passion and the hope of one day fulfilling his dream.