Tribute to Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.


Martin Luther King Jr.jpgEverywhere in the United States today Martin Luther King Jr. is being remembered for his magnanimous achievements and unprecedented stance that saw him defy all odds to stand firm for non-violent opposition and demonstrations against racial inequality and injustice.

January 15 was the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr's birthday and it was a long contested road to having the day recognised as a public holiday in the US which is celebrated on the third Monday of January. Opposed by Ronald Reagan and his conservative group Martin Luther King Jr Day became officially a day of service in 1994 after Congress passed the King Holiday and Service Act 11 years after the holiday was actually created.

Now a day of service rather than a day off, many volunteers have taken to the streets of their communities in America to keep the spirit of the civil rights movement alive, especially for those too young to remember. Food and clothing drives, alley and street cleaning as well as initiatives like helping out around nursing homes have made the holiday busy. Schools hold civil rights fairs and the whole idea is to get folk doing something productive. Martin Luther King's dream has been translated as being all about recognizing the long road ahead and the great deal of work still left to be done.

Sen. Harris Wofford (D-Pa.), spearheaded the effort to see January 15 become a day of service in the US. He said, "If Dr. King came back today, I think he would not be happy to see it as a day off rather than a day of action. We've come a long way, but we still have a long way to go."