Throughout the history of the United States, there were many individuals who fought for justice. Those who believed society needed to be repaired from effects of inequality began to fight for change. Martin Luther King, Jr., is one individual who began to become involved in these changes. The arrest of Rosa Parks in 1955 led King and other black community leaders to unify and placed him in the forefront of the fight for civil rights. Examining and analyzing this man is essential in order to better understand the reasons in which he is celebrated each year.
“I look to a day when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.” These words, spoken by King, clearly display what he stood for – racial equality and human rights. King also stood for nonviolent ways of advocating for equality for African Americans. He believed in protesting peacefully and using words to spread his message of racial equality. Honoring MLK
Writer Chris Lebron said,
“While he indeed fought for the security of a full schedule of rights for black Americans, he was, in fact, fighting for something greater and more difficult to articulate – the hope that white Americans could extend a hand of brotherly and sisterly love to blacks.” (opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/01/18/what-to-the-black-american-is-martin-luther-king-jr-day/.) This certainly resonates with his ideology of all people living and accepting each other. During the 1950s and 1960s, in the South and other areas of the United States, discrimination against African Americans heightened. As a result of this, King began to organize peaceful marches through the streets of many southern cities. With many behind him and others opposing him, he continued to fight for justice. As a result of his efforts, Congress passed the Civil Rights Act in 1964.
Looking forward to today, Martin Luther King’s legacy lives on. Local events take place annually in Broward County that commemorates his work. Various Broward County libraries are hosting events such as children stories, craft projects, and a youth summit. In addition, the City of Fort Lauderdale is hosting an event titled “United We Complete the Dream.” The event, which takes place on January 15, includes a parade, a unity march, and a multicultural festival.
These events allow young children and adults to be educated on the importance of this civil rights leader. While many have this day off from school, it is essential to participate in a day of service. Serving those who are underserved in our local community is an act that Martin Luther King would certainly applaud.
IF YOU GO:
King Holiday Parade & Unity March
When: January 15, 8 to 9:30am
Where: Lincoln Park, 600 NW 19th Ave.
King Holiday Celebration of Unity & Multicultural Festival
When: January 15, 10:30am
Where: Espanade Park, 400 SW 2nd Street