Martin Luther King Jr. | Celebrating A Legacy of Freedom & Service


Presidential Proclamation — Martin Luther King, Jr., Federal Holiday, 2012

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On a hot summer day nearly half a century ago, an African American preacher with no official title or rank gave voice to our Nation’s deepest aspirations, sharing his dream of an America that ensured the true equality of all our people. From the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. inspired a movement that would push our country toward a more perfect Union.

At a time when our Nation was sharply divided, Dr. King called on a generation of Americans to be “voices of reason, sanity, and understanding amid the voices of violence, hatred, and emotion.” His example stirred men and women of all backgrounds to become foot soldiers for justice, and his leadership gave them the courage to refuse the limitations of the day and fight for the prospect of tomorrow. Because these individuals showed the resilience to stand firm in the face of the fiercest resistance, we are the benefactors of an extraordinary legacy of progress.

Today, Dr. King is memorialized on the National Mall where he once spoke, a symbol of how far our Nation has come and a testament to the quiet heroes whose names may never appear in history books, but whose selflessness brought about change few thought possible. Dr. King’s memorial reminds us that while the work of realizing his remarkable dream is unending, with persistence, progress is within our reach.

On the Martin Luther King, Jr., Federal Holiday, we celebrate the man who fought for the America he knew was possible. Dr. King’s faith in a God who loves all His children and a Nation grounded in the promise of equality would not let him rest until victory was won. As we work to meet the challenges of our time from fixing our schools so every child gets a world class education to ensuring all Americans have access to strong and secure economic opportunity let us draw strength from Dr. King’s stirring affirmation that “Everybody can be great because everybody can serve.” In his memory, let us continue climbing toward that Promised Land, one more fair and more just for all people.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim January 16, 2012, as the Martin Luther King, Jr., Federal Holiday. I encourage all Americans to observe this day with appropriate civic, community, and service

projects in honor of Dr. King, and to visit to find Martin Luther King, Jr., Day of Service projects across our country.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirteenth day of January, in the year of our Lord two thousand twelve, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-sixth.


Dr. King’s last speech

Please feel free to post a link or photos of some of your most memorable Dr. King SPEECHES/MILESTONES.

Thank you!

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23 Responses to Martin Luther King Jr. | Celebrating A Legacy of Freedom & Service

  1. [wpvideo 7upyVfNZ]

  2. “Whenever the government provides opportunities and privileges for white people and rich people they call it ‘subsidies.’ When they do it for Negro and poor people they call it ‘welfare.’ The fact is that everybody in this country lives on welfare. Suburbia was built with federally subsidized credit. And highways that take our white brothers out to the suburbs were built with federally subsidized money to the tune of ninety percent. Everybody is on welfare in this country. The problem is that we all too often have socialism for the rich and rugged free enterprise capitalism for the poor. That’s the problem.”

    –Martin Luther King Jr. Miami, FL

  3. rikyrah says:

    this is a wonderful tribute

  4. Dr. Martin Luther King at the White House

    Martin Luther King, Jr. leaves the West Wing after meeting with President Johnson. August 5, 1968. Abbie Rowe, NPS: National Archive and Records Administration. (by Abbie Rowe, NPS: National Archive and Records Administration)

  5. Dr. Martin Luther King at the White House

    President Lyndon B. Johnson meets with Civil Rights leaders Martin Luther King, Jr., Whitney Young, and James Farmer in the Oval Office. January 18, 1964. . (by Lyndon Baines Johnson Presidential Library)

  6. “All we say to America is, “Be true to what you said on paper.” If I lived in China or even Russia, or any totalitarian country, maybe I could understand some of these illegal injunctions. Maybe I could understand the denial of certain basic First Amendment privileges, because they hadn’t committed themselves to that over there. But somewhere I read of the freedom of assembly. Somewhere I read of the freedom of speech. Somewhere I read of the freedom of press. Somewhere I read that the greatness of America is the right to protest for rights. And so just as I said, we aren’t going to let dogs or water hoses turn us around. We aren’t going to let any injunction turn us around”.

    ***Praise God***

  7. The Dream That Came True


    Thinking about King’s legacy reminds me that this is hardly the first time our society has been bitterly divided and fearful of an uncertain future. When he led the 1963 March on Washington and gave his indelible “I Have a Dream” speech, many Southern whites, including officials, were still determined to resist racial integration by any means necessary. Many black Americans were fed up, no longer willing to wait patiently for the rights promised them under the Constitution.

    We were inured to television images that today would be shocking. Police dogs turned loose on peaceful protesters. Columns of smoke rising from cities across the land following King’s assassination.

    As he predicted, King did not live to reach the mountaintop. But his leadership—and that of so many others in the civil rights movement—set us on a path that changed the nation in ways that once seemed unimaginable.

  8. “How long will prejudice blind the visions of men and darken their understanding and drive bright-eyed wisdom from her sacred throne”? ~MLK

  9. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” -MLK

  10. Ametia says:

    Martin Luther King Jr.’s speech at Glenville High School preserved on little-known recording (audio)

    PPublished: Saturday, January 14, 2012, 2:00 PM Updated: Saturday, January 14, 2012, 2:34 PM

    CLEVELAND, Ohio — Art teacher Jayne Sylvester and one of her students stumbled over a slice of history a year ago as they rummaged through cast-off items at Glenville High School’s library, hunting for unusual objects to turn into artsy robots.

    Inside a slim box of reel-to-reel tape, in a pile of stuff to be discarded, they found a little-known recording of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. speaking in Glenville’s auditorium on April 26, 1967. A year later, he was killed by an assassin’s bullet.

    Now, after being rescued from the trash heap, the recording of King’s stirring speech is being readied for use as a social studies lesson at Glenville and other Cleveland schools.

  11. [wpvideo 0AYXKXZS]

    • Martin Luther King Jr.:
      Address Given on June 17, 1962

      “we will be the participants in a great building process that will make America a new nation. And we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. This is our challenge. This is the way we must grapple with this dilemma, and we will be a great people”.

      And let us have faith in the future — I know it’s dark sometimes. And I know all of us begin to ask, “How long will we have to live with this system?” I know all of us are asking, “How long will prejudice blind the visions of men and darken their understanding and drive bright-eyed wisdom from her sacred throne? When will wounded justice lying prostrate on the streets of our cities be lifted from this dust of shame to reign supreme among the children of men? Yes, when will the radiant star of hope be plunged against the nocturnal bosom of this lonely night and plucked from weary souls the manacles of death and the chains of fear? How long will justice be crucified and truth buried? How long?”

      I can only answer this evening, “Not long.”

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