Fifty years ago today a great man stood on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial and gave a speech that changed this nation. His words called upon the past belief that equality was indeed an inalienable right. He had a dream. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. had dream that black people could one day be equal to our white counterparts. It is because of his dream that so many famous and influential African American people have been able to accomplish as much as they have. It is because of his dream and his families sacrifice that we as a people have been able to come as far as we have.
150 years ago, a great man signed a document that gave me and every other black person a chance at freedom. And 50 years ago a greater man still gave a speech that moved this nation, that influenced change. That man gave me a chance at a life. Lincoln took a way the shackles, but Dr. King gave me hope. Hope that I could become someone. Anyone. I did not have to be defined by my race. And it did not have to define me. He hoped that one day his children would be able to live in world where they were not judged by how they looked but who they were. He hoped that one day blacks and whites could stand by each other as friends. But his dream didn’t end there.
It was not just for us blacks. It was for everyone. Asians, Mexicans, Indians, Afghanies, ect. It was for the nation that we could become that Melting pot that we brag about. That we could become that place where people came to escape the persecution they were born into. Every day we take one step closer to achieving his vision. Every day we take one step closer to becoming as good of a place has he believed in. As he died believing in. Every day we honor his memory and message.
It is because of him that I was able to attend a private college. It is because of him that I have options, and that I am more than just my race. It is because of him that I can have friends of all races and not be ashamed. It is because of him that I never had to have “separate but equal” or deal with “Whites Only.” It is because of him that I can choose my seat of the bus. It is because of him that I can become President. And it is because of him that I can dream. I can dream real dreams.
We can dream real dreams. Now we are more than painted faces and shadows. We are more than housekeepers and servants. We are more than the darkness everyone runs from. We are not a disease. Our skin is not a punishment. We are beautiful. We are Liberated. We are Artistic. We are Cultured. We are Kinetic. It is because of him. Because of this speech, that we are indeed free, at last.