Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

January 19, 2015  |   Feature,   News
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1.19.2015: Martin Luther King, Jr. was the chief spokesman for nonviolent activism in the civil rights movement, which successfully protested racial discrimination in federal and state law.

"I Have a Dream" is a public speech delivered by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on August 28, 1963, in which he calls for an end to racism in the United States. Delivered to over 250,000 civil rights supporters from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial during the March on Washington, the speech was a defining moment of the American Civil Rights Movement.
“I Have a Dream” is a public speech delivered by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on August 28, 1963, in which he calls for an end to racism in the United States. Delivered to over 250,000 civil rights supporters from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial during the March on Washington, the speech was a defining moment of the American Civil Rights Movement.

The national Martin Luther King Day of Service was started by former Pennsylvania U.S. Senator Harris Wofford and Atlanta Congressman John Lewis, who co-authored the King Holiday and Service Act. The federal legislation challenges Americans to transform the King Holiday into a day of citizen action volunteer service in honor of Dr. King. This federal holiday in Dr. King’s honor was officially observed in all 50 states for the first time in 2000.

The centerpiece for the memorial is based on a line from King's "I Have A Dream" speech: "Out of a mountain of despair, a stone of hope."  A 30 feet (9.1 m) high relief of Dr. King named the "Stone of Hope" stands past two other pieces of granite that symbolize the "mountain of despair."
The centerpiece for the memorial is based on a line from King’s “I Have A Dream” speech: “Out of a mountain of despair, a stone of hope.” A 30 feet (9.1 m) high relief of Dr. King named the “Stone of Hope” stands past two other pieces of granite that symbolize the “mountain of despair.”
Visitors figuratively "pass through" the Mountain of Despair on the way to the Stone of Hope, symbolically "moving through the struggle as Dr. King did during his life."   The memorial is located on a 4-acre (1.6 ha) site in West Potomac Park that borders the Tidal Basin, southwest of the National Mall. The memorial is near the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial and is intended to create a visual "line of leadership" from the Lincoln Memorial, on whose steps King gave his "I Have a Dream" speech at the March on Washington, to the Jefferson Memorial.
Visitors figuratively “pass through” the Mountain of Despair on the way to the Stone of Hope, symbolically “moving through the struggle as Dr. King did during his life.” The memorial is located on a 4-acre (1.6 ha) site in West Potomac Park that borders the Tidal Basin, southwest of the National Mall. The memorial is near the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial and is intended to create a visual “line of leadership” from the Lincoln Memorial, on whose steps King gave his “I Have a Dream” speech at the March on Washington, to the Jefferson Memorial.

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One place outside the United States where Martin Luther King Jr. Day is observed with equal importance is in the Japanese city of Hiroshima under mayor Tadatoshi Akiba, who holds a special banquet at the mayor’s office as an act of unifying his city’s call for peace with King’s message of human rights.



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