Wednesday, August 28, 2013

President Obama Delivers Personal Remarks To Honor 50th Anniversary Of Dr. Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" Speech

Today President Obama delivered his personal remarks to honor the 50th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" speech from the very same steps of the Lincoln Memorial.

As he stood on the hallowed ground of the civil rights movement, President Obama challenged new generations  to seize the cause of racial equality and honor the "glorious patriots" who marched a half century ago to the very steps from which where he was now speaking.

Here is a full version of President Obama's speech...
Click image for video
Other events that took place during the daylong celebration included marchers walking the streets of Washington behind a replica of the transit bus that Rosa Parks once rode when she refused to give up her seat to a white man.  Along with that at precisely 3 p.m., members of the King family tolled a bell to echo King's call 50 years earlier to "let freedom ring." It was the same bell that once hung in the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Ala., before the church was bombed in 1963.
 In addition former presidents Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter spoke eloquently of King's legacy, how it changed America as well as current events that would have spurred King to action such as the proliferation of guns, the stand-your-ground laws, a Supreme Court ruling striking down parts of the Voting Rights Act, and high rates of joblessness among blacks.

Here are links to President Clinton's and Carter's speeches...

Along with the aforementioned guests the other speakers included...
Actor Hill Harper, broadcast journalist Soledad O’Brien, Pastor A.R. Bernard, Ambassador Andrew Young, D.C. Mayor Vincent C. Gray, The Rev. Wintley Phipps, Sen. Angus King (I-Maine), Johnny L. DuPree, mayor of Hattiesburg, Miss., and secretary of the National Council of Black Mayors, Charles Steele Jr., chief executive of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, Melanie L. Campbell, president and chief executive of the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation, Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-Tex.), Bahamas Prime Minister Perry Christie, Myrlie Evers-Williams, Kristin Stoneking, executive director of the Fellowship of Reconciliation, Mee Moua, president and executive director of Asian Americans Advancing Justice, Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, Fred Maahs, chairman of the American Association of People With Disabilities, U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, Benjamin Todd Jealous, president and chief executive of the NAACP, Roslyn M. Brock, chairman of the NAACP, Alan van Capelle, chief executive of Bend the Arc, The Rev. Joseph Lowery, Laura Turner Seydel, chairman of the Captain Planet Foundation, Eliza Byard, executive director of the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network, Bill Russell, Clayola Brown, president of the A. Philip Randolph Institute, Lee Saunders, president of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, Rep. Donna F. Edwards (D-Md.), Ingrid Saunders Jones, chairman of the National Council of Negro Women, Mark Tillman, president of Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity, Dolores Huerta, co-founder of the National Farm Workers Association, Lynn Stratford, senior vice president of UNICEF’s U.S. Fund, Judy Vredenburgh, president, and Shantia McCarthur, national scholar, from Girls Inc, Rep. Marcia L. Fudge (D-Ohio), chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus, Marc Morial, president and chief executive of the National Urban League, Mary Kay Henry, president of the Service Employees International Union, Jamie Foxx, Alayna Eagle Shield of the National Congress of American Indians, Sofia Campos of United We Dream, Sidney Poitier, Phillip Agnew, executive director of Dream Defenders, The Rev. Al Sharpton, founder and president of the National Action Network, Julian Bond, Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, Lynda Bird Johnson Robb, Ambassador Caroline Kennedy, Forest Whitaker, Marian Wright Edelman, president of the Children’s Defense Fund, Oprah Winfrey, Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.), Martin L. King III, Christine King Farris, The Rev. Bernice King, chief executive of the Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change.
Not one Republican spoke at today's event. Not one Republican leader even bothered to attend today's event.

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