Today, we celebrated the birth of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who was born Michael King. This man fought for the advancement of people as a whole, not just the Black man. Tremendous strides have been made in his quest, but as it stands, we still have a long way to go.
What we see for the most part in the media are pictures of him during the speeches he is famous for, marching in a peaceful state or surrounded by his loving family. What we don’t see so often are the times he was arrested. Many of his efforts were met with opposition. They still are today.
At the White House Rose Garden on November 2, 1983, President Ronald Reagan signed a bill, proposed Martin Luther King being arrested in Montgomery, Alabama 1963_jpgby Representative Katie Hall of Indiana, creating a federal holiday to honor King. It was observed for the first time on January 20, 1986. Senators Jesse Helms and John Porter East (both North Carolina Republicans) led opposition to the bill and questioned whether King was important enough to receive such an honor. Helms criticized King’s opposition to the Vietnam War and accused him of espousing “action-oriented Marxism”. Helms led a filibuster against the bill and on October 3, 1983, submitted a 300-page document to the Senate alleging that King had associations with communists. New York Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan declared the document a “packet of filth”, threw it on the Senate floor and stomped on it.
His dream was one for all of us, not just the Black man. It is so obvious that we all have to live on this planet together so why is so hard for us to accept each other with the skin we’re in? We’re all different but we’re all beautiful. It’s time that Dr. King’s dream is realized and we all play together.