Published On: Sun, Jan 20th, 2019

What Would Rev. King Think About America on the Eve of His Holiday

In a few days, Americans will pause to celebrate the life and memory of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., whose life was cut short 61 years ago by an assassin’s bullet.

I was engaged in a conversation recently where the discussion surrounded what Dr. King’s thoughts would be if he looked at our country today?

I chimed in that King would be appalled but he would give us words of inspiration. He would encourage us to go back to our core values and be a nation where every human life is valued and respected regardless of where we came from.

He certainly would promote the philosophy that regardless of whatever country we are from, we are one people, one family and we all live in the same world house, not just American house.

I also think King would be somewhat pleased to see an America that is no longer defined almost exclusively in black and white but a nation of many hues, and one in which civil rights debates about opportunity and economic inclusiveness are filtered through a somewhat more complex lens. I think he would smile when he sees how we observe the King Day holiday locally

There is no doubt that America is better and more diverse than King could have envisioned back in 1963. However, while race relations and opportunities for blacks and people of color have improved since his time, all we have to do is look at flashpoints across the nation and the many hate groups that have sprung up, to see that a lot more needs to be done to fight prejudice and bigotry.

Here in Boca Raton, residents can attend a ceremony and celebration featuring speeches, performances and a march. The events take place from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. beginning at MLK Jr. Memorial, 200 NE Ruby St., and ending at Sanborn Square, 72 N Federal Hwy.

Once at Sanborn Square, residents can celebrate with free carnival rides, music, family activities, face painting, and vendors.

New this year, artists of all ages are invited to submit a piece of original artwork in any medium that embodies one of the philosophies taught by King Jr., which can be found at www.TheKingCenter.org/king-philosophy. 

Finalists will be put on display at the Carnival at Sanborn Square on January 21. The winner will be selected at the event and will be featured on the City’s Special Events Facebook page & website.

Submit a photo of your entry by January 17 to mamar@myboca.us to be considered. For more information, call 561-367-7073.

In Delray Beach, residents will observe the holiday over four days, beginning with a free fish fry on Friday night at the Masonic Lodge, 85 NW 5th Ave. There will be dominoes and card games.

On Saturday, the men of Lambda Alpha Alpha Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity will hold the 23rd annual MLK Track & Field Day at Pompey Park Community Center, 1101 NW 2nd St. from 8:30 a.m. to 12 noon, where breakfast and lunch will be provided.. Students ages 5 to 12 will receive a brief history of King and participate in various field activities.

Members of the clergy and their parishioners from many faiths will converge at St. Paul Baptist Church on Sunday at 3 p.m. for a 90-minute ecumenical service. Interim police chief Javaro Sims will speak on “All life is inter-related”, a subject that Rev. King often contemplated.

The observances will culminate with a silent walk from the Delray Beach Community Center, 50 NW 1st Ave., then travel along Atlantic Ave down historic 5th Avenue pass the Spady Museum and end at Pompey Park. Attendees will participate in a service project at Pompey Park.

The walk is scheduled to begin at 2 p.m. and lineup will be at 1:30 p.m.

Three youth winners in the county-wide annual oratorical contest will speak at three of the events on the topic, “All life is inter-related.”

About the Author

Leave a comment

XHTML: You can use these html tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>