Carla Saskia Sanchez
Let us thank Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. for many of the rights that we enjoy today. The leader of the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s, Dr. King did more than just promote equality.
Born in Atlanta, Georgia in 1929, young King was raised in a religious, loving, yet strict environment that embraced learning. He began at Morehouse College at age 15, but it wasn’t until a few years later that he decided to become a religious leader.
Of course, this wasn’t easy for him, as he lived during a period of segregation and extreme racism. King, even in his early years, was an advocate for social change. Yet, in 1955, Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat to a white man on a bus in Montgomery, Alabama. This ignited many angry voices that later came out in protest, with Dr. King as their leader. After more than a year, the Montgomery Bus Boycott ended triumphantly, with segregation being banned in public transportation.
Dr. King did not stop there. The black community in the Southern States was more empowered than ever, and was willing to overcome the struggles in order to achieve the civil rights that they deserved. Dr. King encouraged non-violent protests to get a message of needed reform across peacefully.
Gaining national recognition and admiration, Dr. King was more than ready to march on Washington, D.C. with hundreds of people. It was on August 28, 1963, that Martin Luther King, Jr. gave his historic “I Have a Dream” speech in the presence of the Lincoln Memorial, with hopes of uniting all people regardless of race or skin color.
The tragic day of April 4, 1968, marks the assassination of one of the most influential and courageous men to over leave. Today we remember Dr. Martin Luther King with respect for his bravery and commitment to demanding justice for people of all backgrounds.
Dr. King spent much of his life devoted to public education, justice, reform, and peace.
Americans recognize him as a true hero that has inspired many people seeking justice to be unafraid of demanding what is necessary, committing to positive change, and trusting that even if they just try, they will be successful.