Posts Tagged ‘Martin Luther King Jr’

August 28, 2013

MLK_1963_MoWNot only is today the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, but it is also my son’s first birthday. I’m not sure how many expectant mother’s are focused on what day their baby is born, but I was. I was due on August 25th and from the onset was hoping my little one would arrive on August 28th. The little fellow cooperated (and he has been cooperating ever since, except at bed time). I went into labor in the wee hours of August 28th and he arrived late that afternoon. Not only was my little one born on the historic anniversary of Martin Luther King, Jr. delivering his “I Have a Dream” speech, but I avoided having to share my baby’s birthday with the anniversary of Hurricane Katrina which was the next day, August 29th.

That said, our day will be spent watching live coverage of the commemoration of the March on Washington and smashing cake.

For those interested in reading more about the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial and dedication, see the posts from August 2011 (August 28 and August 31) and October 2011.

Living Legends: Black History Month

The program read “Living Legends of the Civil Rights Movement,” but it just as easily could have been called “Living History.” So many people came out to hear Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton moderate a discussion with civil rights leaders Rep. John Lewis and Julian Bond, former chairman of the NAACP, that there was a line down the block outside Busboys & Poets where the event was held on Monday night, February 27, in honor of black history month.

All three panelists were activists with the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Council (SNCC) in the 1960s. They talked about a time when “the south was terrorist territory.” They shared some of the atrocities, including a man who had a kidney problem and stopped at the only bathroom for miles to relieve himself. He got no relief. Instead, he was shot in the back and killed. It was a white only bathroom.

Norton, Lewis, and Bond talked about Bloody Sunday in Selma, the passage of the Voting Rights Act, the March on Washington, and, of course, Martin Luther King, Jr. For two plus hours, the crowded room was spellbound as history came alive. In order to accommodate as many people as possible, bleachers and chairs were added to the stage behind the speakers. What was encouraging was that so many of those faces were young. And in the audience itself was an older crowd which included a former Time magazine journalist who covered civil rights in the 1960s, former SNCC members, and even a Freedom Rider, Joan Trumpauer Mulholland.

The evening ended with a Q&A and one of the questions was about Obama. Rep Lewis said that “the election of Obama was not the dream; just a down payment.”