“I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.’”
It is the anniversary of the death of Martin Luther King Jr. – a man who inspired generations to pursue the ideas of justice and peace and turn them into a reality. The was a Man of Action who used his actions, as well as his words to help build a better world for all.
Famous for his role in the US Civil Rights Movement throughout the 1950s and 60s, Martin Luther King was a man of conscious. His ‘I Have a Dream’ speech – the climax of the 1968 March on Washington – emphasised a ‘colour blind’ society, where all people would know equality. This placed the issue of Civil Rights at the top of the agenda for American politics, paving the way for the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
‘Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. And so we must straighten our backs and work for our freedom’
But he saw the need to address many other causes, such as the Poor People’s Campaign in 1968, which focused on economic justice, believing Congress to be showing ‘hostility to the poor’. Martin Luther King was brave enough to question the world he lived in, and dreamt not only of political reform, but of a shift in attitude of society on the whole, maintaining that ‘reconstruction of society itself is the real issue to be faced’.
Martin Luther King Jr. transcended politics and today we at The Wild Geese remember a truly great man.