Today President Barack Obama will be inaugurated for his second (and last) term. This event coincides with the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Holiday.
I don’t have to like this president to be in awe of the significance and symbolism of this wonderful synchronicity.
I grew up in a world where it was accepted that black people were not equal to white people. I did not grow up in the south, so I never experienced segregation at its extreme. I grew up in a world where it was totally acceptable to refer to African Americans as a variety of names I won’t repeat here.
I was at a formative age when I watched on TV the MLK “I have a dream” speech, which I thought was dreamy but would never be reality.
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. – Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., August 28, 1963.
We don’t have it right yet. But I believe we are progressing towards right. We have come so incredibly far in my lifetime, and I don’t want to ever forget that. In 1963 the idea that we would one day elect a black president would have been laughed at.
Not any more. Not any more.
Thank you God.