(I have a dream that our country will soon bring an end to institutional racism, racial profiling, police brutality, poverty and senseless wars. I have a dream that our country will, free at last, embrace equality and dignity for all people.)
The annual Oklahoma City parade honoring and celebrating the life of the great civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr. will begin at 2 p.m. today near St. Paul’s Episcopal Cathedral at N.W. 7th Street and Broadway Avenue.
A program and a silent march in King’s honor starts at 9 a.m. at the Freedom Center, 2500 N. Martin Luther King Avenue, followed by other activities.
The Rev. King, of course, was a tireless and non-violent advocate for equality in his career until his assassination in 1968. A portion of his many accomplishments was recently featured in the movie Selma, which has been nominated for an Academy Award for Best Picture.
Below is an excerpt from King’s famous “I Have A Dream” speech given in 1963 in front the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. The speech is considered one of the greatest pieces of oratory in recorded history.
I say to you today, my friends, so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.
I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.
I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.
I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.
I have a dream today.
I have a dream that one day, down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of interposition and nullification; one day right there in Alabama, little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.
I have a dream today.
King’s legacy lives on, and the spirit of his work-the fight for equality and social justice-is needed just as much now as it was in the 1960s here in Oklahoma City and elsewhere.
I have a dream that our country will soon bring an end to institutional racism, racial profiling, police brutality, poverty and senseless wars. I have a dream that our country will, free at last, embrace equality and dignity for all people.