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How MLK’s Famous Speech Enlightened Millions

Even if you haven’t heard the famous speech given by Martin Luther King Jr, you have most likely heard of it. It was a monumental address given at such a divided time in America. It has been referenced countless times ever since and became one of the most famous speeches of our time.

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

MLK’s Famous Speech

Martin Luther King Jr didn’t only bring a new outlook to what it meant to have equality for all, he also forever altered the course of history. The effect of the work he did during the Civil Rights Movement wasn’t limited to America, it also reached other corners of the world. It was on August 23, 1963, that Martin Luther King Jr gave his famed “I have a dream” address in Washington D.C. at the Lincoln Memorial. It was at that moment that he cemented his cause so that others might follow in the search for freedom and equality for all people.

Many considered Martin Luther King’s zeal for equality as a defining characteristic that was completely his own, and it may have been to a certain degree. But it’s also important to consider that the work of Martin Luther King was in some ways an extension of what was initiated by the sixteenth president of the United States, President Abraham Lincoln. Dr. King mentions the Emancipation Proclamation at the start of his famous address, which was declared by President Lincoln a whole century prior. A great way to comprehend the words of Dr. King at their essence is to explore the history of colonialism, the fight for racial equality, and the slave trade of West Africa.

A Call For Hope

The descendants of those subjected to a life of slavery and the descendants of white colonial masters were given the opportunity to fully grasp and comprehend their horrific history. As Martin Luther King delivered his powerful speech, those descendants had a chance to see the importance of coming together to make way for a better tomorrow.

In his address, Dr. King demonstrated that equality, respect, and unity were possible even though discrimination and segregation formed a part of daily life. He also demonstrated that even though these issues might have been symptoms of a time of slavery, loving and respecting all people no matter the color of their skin is the ultimate goal.

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

A Future To Believe In

Martin Luther King’s famous speech at Lincoln Memorial and his life’s work provided a vision of the future that people could work towards. He allowed people to understand that in order to make a difference in the world, violence wouldn’t be necessary. And his speech gave other civil rights leaders an incredible boost to their fight in knowing that one person really can change the world. Dr. King opened up our understanding of what true freedom and equality could be and left a lasting mark on millions of people that no matter the color of your skin, no matter your walk of life, we can all serve our communities and strive for freedom and equality. Without that defining moment of Martin Luther King at the Lincoln Memorial, the world might have never seen so many Black icons across all disciplines ranging from sports to politics in years since. The United States might have never known Barack Obama, the first Black President in the country’s history.

Martin Luther King Jr became a symbol of hope for many and a guiding example of the kind of world we should work toward. He showed the world that through unity and a common goal we could achieve a better life. Dr. King allowed many to truly understand that an equal world was not so far away.