On this date, August 28, 1963, Martin Luther King Jr. made his “I Have A Dream” speech at the Lincoln Memorial during the Great March on Washington, one of the biggest political rallies with more than 200,000 Americans. The march brought to attention the political and social struggles of African Americans with speeches and performances from John Lewis, Josephine Baker, Mahalia Jackson, Bob Dylan and many others as well. This event is recognized as a pivotal moment in the American Civil Rights Movement.


The “March on Washington” Leaders Visit the White House

On this day in 1963, civil rights leaders speak to members of the press following a meeting with President John F. Kennedy regarding “The March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom” that was held earlier that day.


Left to right: President of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA (NCC), Reverend Eugene Carson Blake; unidentified (back to camera); President of the National Urban League, Whitney M. Young, Jr.; President of the Negro American Labor Council (NALC), A. Philip Randolph; unidentified man (in back); Executive Secretary of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Roy Wilkins (speaking at microphones); President of United Auto Workers (UAW), Walter P. Reuther; President of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.; President of the American Jewish Congress, Rabbi Joachim Prinz; several unidentified reporters. White House, Washington, D.C. 8/28/63.

President John F. Kennedy and Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson meet with organizers of “The March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom” in the Oval Office. 8/28/63.

"1963: The Struggle for Civil Rights" from the JFK Library


In honor the 51st anniversary of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech, we’re exploring our dreams. During our annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Art and Service workshop, we asked children what they could do to help their community. From picking up litter to helping those in need, they had some great ideas. Now it’s your turn. What are you doing to make your community a better place?


Official Program for the March on Washington, 08/28/1963.

Item From: Post-Administration Records Collection. ( 04/01/1985).

Fifty-one years ago the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom was held. The March is now an iconic moment in American history including the memorable words from Martin Luther King Jr. “I have a dream”.

Source: http://go.usa.gov/DNpF

     The American so-called Negroes must recognize each other as brothers and sisters…stop carrying guns and knives to harm each other, stop drinking whiskey, taking dope, reefers, and even cigarettes. No more gambling. Save your money. Stop fornication, adultery and prostitution. Elevate the black woman; respect her and protect her. Let us rid ourselves of immoral habits and God will be with us to protect and guide us.

     Then, we must form a platform that will be good for all of our own people, as well as for others. As black people we must unite. We must recognize and give intelligent active support to our political leaders who fight for us unselfishly, sincerely, and fearlessly.

     But, to prove their sincerity and their right for the support of the black masses, these leaders must first display fearlessness, intelligence, and unity among themselves. They must stop their public bickering with each other. They must stop attacking each other in front of the white man, and for the benefit of the white man. If the black leaders must have differences of opinion, learn to go into the closet with each other, but when you come from behind closed doors, show a united front in the face of the one who is a common enemy to all of us. Unity will never exist among the black masses as long as our leaders are not united.

     We want to get behind leaders who will fight for us…leaders who are not afraid to demand freedom, justice, and equality. We do not want leaders who are hand picked for us by the white man. We don’t want any more Uncle Toms.

     We don’t want any more leaders who are puppets or parrots for the white man. We want brave leaders as our spokesmen, who are not afraid to state our case, who can intelligently demand what we need, what we want, and what is rightfully ours. We don’t want leaders who are beggars, who feel they must compromise with the enemy. And we don’t want leaders who are selfish or greedy…who will sell us out for a few pieces of silver.


Unfinished business: Martin Luther King in Memphis

“What does it profit a man to be able to eat at an integrated lunch counter if he doesn’t earn enough to buy a hamburger and a cup of coffee?”


On the fortieth anniversary of his assassination, eulogies on the life of Martin Luther King Jr come cheap, and often from the most unlikely quarters. The gesture is by now an almost obligatory one for American politicians, including many who have devoted the years since King’s death to overturning the very reforms that the black freedom movement managed to force out of a reluctant ruling class. Thus we have the spectacle of a deeply unpopular George Bush, the pampered son of an elite dynasty whose legacy will forever be associated with the twin crimes of Iraq and New Orleans, offering up pious homage to a man whose public life embodied a commitment to struggle against everything his administration has stood for.

There are slightly less offensive, but equally misplaced, pieties on offer from other sources. Over the past generation public memory of the civil rights movement in the US has been powerfully shaped by the corporate right, which throughout the 1950s and early 1960s had been implacably opposed to King and the movement.1 Today mega-corporations such as McDonald’s and Walmart—whose profits in the US depend so heavily on the exploitation of cheap, non-unionised black labour—have assumed the role of guardians of the civil rights legacy, sponsoring school curricula with titles like “Black History Makers of Tomorrow”

Continued at:- http://www.isj.org.uk/index.php4?id=425&issue=118