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April 3rd, 2008
07:04 PM ET

As America remembers my father...

ALT TEXT
Martin Luther King III, son of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., shares his thoughts with the 360blog on the 40th anniversary of his father's assassination, and where we go from here.

As America remembers my father this week, I find myself reflecting on his great dream and the amazing strides we have made as a nation towards accomplishing the dream.  We have had two African-Americans serve as Secretary of State and in this exciting election either a woman or an African-American will be the Democratic candidate for President of the United States of America.  I am proud of the instrumental role my father had in bringing about systemic change and I draw strength from knowing so many people are working to continue this change and accomplish his dream.

My reflection on my father also leads me to his immense passion to overcome economic injustice.  A passion that is evident in his final sermon, given at the National Cathedral on March 31st, 1968, in which he declared, “There is nothing new about poverty. What is new is that we now have the techniques and the resources to get rid of poverty. The real question is whether we have the will.”  Sadly, forty years have passed and absolutely no strides have been made to combat poverty.

Therefore, as I look back on my father’s great work and incredible life, I am also looking forward to continuing that work and honoring his life.  I am looking forward to Americans rolling up their sleeves, joining together and working to bring about a systemic change that will forever rid the world of economic injustice, as my father asked us all to do forty years later. 

For this reason, I recently urged our Presidential candidates to publicly vow to appoint a cabinet level poverty officer, an officer with the sole goal of ending the economic injustice that oppresses so many Americans.  With over 36 million people living in poverty, 12 million of them children, something needs to be done and it needs to be done now.  The President has a nation to run and a world to work with, but a cabinet officer can have the sole dedication to ending poverty. 

It is a privilege to share with all of you today.  Please keep the discussion going, roll up your sleeves and help us to realize my father’s dream.

– Martin Luther King III

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soundoff (96 Responses)
  1. Terrence

    America has come a long way since its inception. America still has a long way to go. The preamble to the constitution recognizes that the goal is to create a “more perfect union”. This would seem to indicate that the current state of America is temporary, because there is still room for progress and there will always be room for progress. Break time is over, lets get back to work, we still have a long way to go.

    April 4, 2008 at 10:05 am |
  2. Melinda

    Martin –

    Thank you for your hopeful message on what must be a sad day for you and your sister. I love the idea of a poverty officer in the next cabinet -perhaps you are the best person for the job? Your father was an inspiration to us all and continues to inspire years later. Thank you for your efforts to continue his work. He would be so proud of you and your siblings.

    April 4, 2008 at 10:04 am |
  3. Michael Albano

    Your father was an extremely intelligent speaker. His words still speak to the the people that have been born since his passing.

    April 4, 2008 at 10:00 am |
  4. Bubba

    The real tragedy of MLK is that a man was shot for speaking his mind in a free country. That should never have happened, and it shouldn't happen today. Why did he get a holiday? Why are his words repeated and his name put on street signs, why is he still a polarizing figure?

    It bears repeating: HE WAS SHOT FOR SPEAKING HIS MIND. In America, in the 20th century. Think it over.

    April 4, 2008 at 10:00 am |
  5. Cathy

    I recently saw a clip of your father and Harry Belafonte on the Merv Griffin show. I had never seen him in such an informal setting before, and it was wonderful to hear him speak, so very eloquently, on the issues of the day. Most of them still ring true today. Nothing fazed him, and his voice was always calm and soothing. What a great, selfless man.

    We must all work for peace and equality for all. I love your idea for a Poverty Officer in the Cabinet. You and your brothers and sisters continue the reach for the dream, and with the same class and intelligence of both your parents. Count me in!

    God bless your family. You are in our hearts always!

    April 4, 2008 at 9:58 am |
  6. Frank Ahenackyu

    MLK is a hero of my country Nicaragua and all the Central Americans countries. There is no other examples as this great man.

    April 4, 2008 at 9:57 am |
  7. Paula from Canada

    Mr.King,

    I was young when your father was taken from this earth and I cried , and cried again and then shortly after Bobby Kennedy our other warrior on poverty and injustice was also taken.. how insurmountable was the grief of losing those two men.
    Dr.King will live on forever, he changed not only America but the world, he was a man of peace and change and how pleased he must be to look down and see a black man running for President.. and it is all because of your Father.. God Bless you sir..and Peace!

    April 4, 2008 at 9:56 am |
  8. Laura

    God Bless you Martin. Thank you for your dedication to this country. I agree with a cabinet officer dedicated to ending poverty. How can we, the public, lobby for this change?

    April 4, 2008 at 9:55 am |
  9. Emily

    I was just commenting to my husband: I feel like I've always lived with the legend of your father- that I could always imagine him as a part of the very fabric of this country.

    He is such a symbol for freedom, even for those of us who weren't even alive when he was. He's the reason we have come this far- we only have to continue to work to bring this country together.

    Thank you.

    April 4, 2008 at 9:52 am |
  10. james keating

    Thank you for sharing your views and memories. Your father was one of the greatest americans to have ever lived. I will always remember how he stood up against the Vietnam war, against the strong advice of his counselors, who felt that it would hurt the Civil Rights movement. But he did it because he felt it was right, and one should always do what is right regardless of the perceived consequences.

    Great beings are born at decisive moments of human history, to help guide and inspire humankind. It could be as a scientist, a teacher, a humanitarian, or a soldier, but always to uphold righteousness. Your father was unquestionably such a great being, who fulfilled his purpose and then left. There is no tribute, no monument, nor accolade that is too great for him. We should build a monument on the scale of the Lincoln memorial in Washington for him, to inspire the youth of all future generations.

    April 4, 2008 at 9:50 am |
  11. John

    How do you feel about your fathers infidelity and plagiarism? And how on the Hoover FBI tapes he was heard beating a women prostitute up. Why won't the FBI release these tapes until 2030 or so?

    April 4, 2008 at 9:45 am |
  12. Pamela-NC

    I'm a 40y WF from North Carolina. I have racists all around me. It was a main reason we moved from our last neighborhood. I didn't want my children in the same yard as those hateful creatures.
    Last night my kids 7y and 9y were watching the news with me and my daughter turns and asks 'when did Coretta die?', I said 'I can't remember, but just recently, why?' and she says 'did she know about Obama?' and I said 'God, I hope so.' She went on to say that she wished MLK could have known him and seen his success. I told her if he hadn't of been killed, we may have seen an Obama earlier than now.
    We must fix poverty in this country to cut down on crime and drop out rates. We must give young black boys a different vision of what the future can hold for them. No, that's not the reason for why he gets my vote....that reason is another topic entirely. But on this historic day I feel a need to draw a link between Obama and the Civil Rights Movement and the interwoven problems of our society that everyone seems to be focused on right now.....economy, job losses, drop out rates, poverty, education, health care etc.
    Obama 08
    -Pamela Clayton, NC

    April 4, 2008 at 9:12 am |
  13. Terry

    This up roar over what Reverend Wright said just shows how clueless Americans are to what their government has done. All he and MLK were saying is that sometimes, like our current president and vp, our government has supported dictators all over the world and still do today.. we have used the atom bomb in Hiroshima murdered millions of Vietnamese and killed people in central America because they supported a social democracy.. of course this will come back on us..duh.. we do not go after Bin Laden family friend of Bush and we support Saudi Arabia who has the worst treatment of people comparable to China who our corporations support because of cheap labor and no concern for American jobs or the people. Why do Americans continue to say if you do not agree with your government like Michael Moore has done then you are not American. Thomas Jefferson said
    "When people fear their government there is tyranny.
    When the government fears the people there is liberty."
    Americans obviously need more schooling and especially in history. The world no longer views us as peace keepers. We are imperialists. Isn't this exactly why the Constitution was written to get away from this? Those of us who want to bring home the soldiers safely and stop war for profit are not non American we are real Americans and see ourselves as part of a bigger community then the cowboys who currently run things. Is the problem that black men are intelligent enough to say this while our white men leaders only talk about us in holy terms and believe the world is only 10,00 years old and we have no connection with nature as evolution shows. This is why they have no problem destroying it because they have no intelligent connection with it. Reverend Wright and MLK are men of peace contrary to the white establishment like even Bill Clinton saying why not have a fight thats what America is about..hello grow up Bill. Shouldn't American leaders be able to have an intelligent and HONEST conversation. This is why as a white woman I vote for Obama. It is clear he can see the writing on the wall and the bigger picture. Not just the needs of the rich, arrogant and powerful.

    "An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind" Ghandi

    April 4, 2008 at 4:49 am |
  14. aigle

    Your father was a great person who beleive on his dreams and that was some already came true, on injustice, egality, and race but not yet to do enough for the poverty, as the fact what happened in New Orleans, no one from the political figure care about them, just making the poverty was much bigger, excepted great attention from Brad Pitt, where on the magazine can see that former President Bill Clinton was also coming there, to give attention beside Brad Pitt, to help people to rebuilt their home, after the tragedy. If Barack Obama will win the next nomination against Hillary Clinton, I don't think he will win also against Mmcain. Hillary has much stonger character, experiences in all ways than Obama, to get the nomination against MMcain. Barack brought your father's name on his campaigne but he is not comparable at all to the greatness of your father. So I hope the Ameican people will not be mistaken on chosing someone to be their next President and absolutely not Barack Obama, because he is not the right person. But if Hillary can win, the former president Bill Clinton will be beside her, who could become as well as a good adviser for Hillary, to make your father's dream comes true, completely. Courage Mr King, your father's dream is not only a symbol of all American but also people in all over the world. We are still hearing his great speech about that dreams.

    April 4, 2008 at 4:03 am |
  15. Taddele Hiwot

    A nation that fears to discuss the so called worst news is questionable to be a leader of the new world nations. Americans lived to fear to know the worst news on race relations in America. Dr. Martin Luther King dared to announce the first worst news on the race problem in broad day light. Dr. King had to do it choosing words and moods of Americans. But now Senator Obama spoke about that same worst news of race relations in America. The fear was too heavy at first and everyone feared there will be unpreventable quarrel between the past and the present. As days went by Americans are now regaining a victorious future coming in with the every day break by correcting relations between past and present. Senator Obama is now being accepted as the center of the new world relations to strengthen humanities future.
    With great humility,

    April 4, 2008 at 2:17 am |
  16. Anne Russell

    Your father was the best public speaker and leader America has had since Franklin Roosevelt. I still get goose bumps whenever I hear his recorded voice.

    April 4, 2008 at 1:35 am |
  17. Tane Lewis

    Thank you for your blog and your commitment to your father's dream. His legacy continues to shine light in dark times and brings hope to millions. Your comments on poverty are astute and poignant. I couldn't agree with you more and hope that the candidates will heed your advise and begin to address this stain on our nation. May we all listen to your words as well as those of your father and the many others worldwide who call on us to lift our brothers and sisters from plight.

    April 4, 2008 at 1:19 am |
  18. Gerry Bloomer

    What a momentous documentary that CNN's Soledad O'Brian put together with colleagues on the watershed unfolding of Dr. King's culminating saga to advance racial rights in America. Soledad, one of many shady occurrences that really struck me was the parallels between how upon breaking out of incarceration, James Earl Ray did the bank heist and the disposed of his partially burnt gun at his Mother's gravesite. He used the batch of those $20 bills out of 200K USD to finance his warped twisted and convoluted mission to acclaimed notoriety and recognition. And in what I perceive as an eery episode of Deja Vu, after his assination of Dr. King on this eve 40 years ago, he panicked and recklessly and carelessly disposed of most significant signs of evidence linked to himself in a doorway vesitibule opening of the record shop. Criminals more often than not, even ones of this heinous proportions often repeat the same behavioral patterns and this to me in very condemning and corroborating evidence pointing squarely to James Earl Ray. On a transcendent note, I do believe Barack Obama is taking Dr. King's exemplary mission to the next level with his campaign for the presidency! Thanks again to Soledad on a remarkable recounting of an inter-generational phenom extraordinairre. Tommorrow is a sacred and defining milestone marker towards the progression of your nation as seen from lens of a myself a Canadian.

    April 4, 2008 at 1:12 am |
  19. jaycee

    CNN, Thank u so much, for the Dr. King special, SOLEDAD OBRIEN, UR GREEEAAT, TO THE KING FAMILY, WHAT AN HONOR TO BE THIE CHILD OF THIS GREAT LEADER, MAY THE LORD BLESS THIS FAMILY AND HOPE HIS LEGACY NEVER DIES, HIS WIFE AND HIM WERE REALLY AMERICAN HEROES

    April 4, 2008 at 12:19 am |
  20. Mike in NYC

    Kathy in Tennessee wrote:

    "We are all failing in this arena. We must give our youth hope and paths to success."

    Yes, everyone's failing - everyone except the "youth" themselves.

    Reminds me of what T.S. Eliot wrote:

    "Human kind cannot bear very much reality."

    This thread illustrates that perfectly.

    April 4, 2008 at 12:12 am |
  21. Franky

    You know, his dad actually walked over here at Marquette Park, is not actually far from where I live. I will say that if he came back, I think he will be proud..

    Do you know what's my favorite sound byte?? ....Hope. Why?? It doesn't question you, it challenges you.....

    April 3, 2008 at 11:35 pm |
  22. Sharon Wright

    Dear Martin,

    If your father had not been killed that awful day, if he were alive and watching Barack Obama's attempts to become the first black president of the US, what would he say? Could this man be the key to "The Dream?"

    Sharon Wright
    Toronto

    April 3, 2008 at 10:47 pm |
  23. Julia Glennville, Ga.

    Mr. King, It is a great and wonderful thing to have such a tribute to your father. It is a sad world that many live in and feel that they cannot overcome. Your father transcended race, gender and religion. It might have been a difficult and sometimes horrible struggle at that time, but he persevered. He touched everyone in America and made them proud to be Americans. Everyone was touched in some way even if they don't realize it, or deny it. I fear that others in this country are going about fixing the problems the wrong way. It should never be about race, gender or religion. It should always start and end about the people, all people, who live in this country and face their individual challenges. That is the message that I got from your father and I hope that our current and future leaders stop and think about what his words meant, then, and today, and what they and we can do to make them a reality tomorrow. God bless you and give you strength.

    April 3, 2008 at 10:43 pm |
  24. April in Texas

    Sad day indeed but may we learn from the past and forge foward to make America a better place and the land of dreams.

    April 3, 2008 at 10:42 pm |
  25. Kathy - Tennessee

    The news this week about the low graduation rate in many of our cities is relevant to the issues of poverty. We must find ways to engage youth – and black males especially – in an educational system that gives them what they need to earn a living. We are all failing in this arena. We must give our youth hope and paths to success. It does take a village.......

    April 3, 2008 at 10:38 pm |
  26. Carolyn

    I tried to watch the special on MARTIN LUTHER KING but could not. I thought I would see the accomplishments of MARTIN LUTHER KING not his killer what a waisted 2 hours.

    April 3, 2008 at 10:23 pm |
  27. kevin lynch

    We "typical white people" are taught in our churches that their is no black or white, everyone is to be treated THE SAME!!!!!!
    Shame on Chicago churches for preaching HATE , racist separtism and anti americanism. If you don't like it here; LEAVE!!!!!!!!!!!
    The rev. wright has been Barracks spiritual leader for 20 years, barrack is a product of rev. wright!!
    Michele Obama also is a product of wrights hate rhetoric as we have heard from her!!!!!!
    These reverands are disgracefully RACIST!!! Period!!! Massachusetts is smart enough to read into the influence that wright had on Obama over 20 years!!! We will put his morality under a microscope along with his beliefs as he states "typical white people"!!
    John Kerry and Kennedy can go to chicago with Obama; we put theese guys in the seats they are sitting in; they will lose their next elections along with Flaherty. Watch massachusetts vote if Obama is the nominee!!!!

    April 3, 2008 at 9:50 pm |
  28. Illinois

    This guy is great!! Why can't he run for president???!!

    April 3, 2008 at 9:45 pm |
  29. Mike in NYC

    "Sadly, forty years have passed and absolutely no strides have been made to combat poverty."

    No, the one trillion plus dollars that have been spent since the sixties to combat poverty obviously don't count.

    Presumably, the cabinet poverty officer's primary mission will be to establish the groundwork for the dispensing of the next trillion.

    This "dialog" on race and poverty shows every sign of remaining laughably one-sided.

    April 3, 2008 at 9:41 pm |
  30. Cynthia Tidwell

    In 1967 – 1968 I recall becoming newly aware that Dr. King was a Christian minister. I listened to his messages on the radio while tending infant sons. I knew instantly he was a prophet, he was right, the Administration was deceptive, Viet Nam was a disaster, and America would be judged as a nation by God.

    I had come to a place where I couldn't watch television news without weeping. Then I couldn't read the newspaper without weeping. This from a white girl from Chicago raised on a toothsome diet of xenophobia, and hatred of many racial and ethnic groups.

    I remember the day Dr. King was assassinated. My husband played fast-pitch softball in Mpls. I packed infant sons into the car and drove to pick him up at the bar that sponsored his team. I walked into the bar and announced that King had been shot and was dead. There was nothing but silence. No longer interested in beer and bragging, the players and their wives slowly trickled out. Nobody cared to say anything. We were all stunned.

    A few months earlier Minneapolis and St. Paul were burning amidst rioters. But most of us didn't really know what was happening. We were too isolated.

    I remember sitting in my kitchen with a friend, holding babies, watching the funeral all day long on a little portable blank-and-white t.v. I cried all day. It was a terrible time in America.

    My husband and I have spent the rest of our lives in a number of ordinary, mundane ways advocating for civil rights, human rights, racial justice, and multicultural understanding. I will end this life wondering, "what if?"

    April 3, 2008 at 9:40 pm |
  31. LJD

    What a selfless American...He loved America when American did not love him

    April 3, 2008 at 9:38 pm |
  32. Slater

    Martin,

    Why are you not running for president? We need so badly all the wisdom that you could bring to this nation. I mean, you are not even running and you are picking up the ball of economic hardship and running with it, with a plan inspired by another great leader.

    We need a real leader in this country, a leader that leads from their heart, like your father or Kennedy, who saw people when he went out, not different races.

    You put it so well, "economic injustice", and it exists for all Americans to feel, not just any one area or group of folks.

    Maybe you could be this great nation's cabinet level poverty officer. It's a thought!!

    We loved your father, and thank you for gracing us with your presence! Keep urging!!!

    April 3, 2008 at 9:36 pm |
  33. Jeannine Woods

    I join Martin Luther King III in celebrating the life of Martin Luther King Jr and the gift from God that hen was for ALL people. Though through the work and scarf ice of Dr King we are able to share in so much of what America has to offer, I believe we have become to complacent. With so many in poverty, inner city school still inferior to the schools of the suburbs, health care not available or inadequate, out of portion number of minorities going to prison, our work that Dr King started if far from over.

    Somehow we have come to believe that we are going to miraculously rescued.. this my friend is just not going to happen. It is going to take hard work, fervent prayer, and a society that finds value in the life of its citizens. We must take our heads out of the sand and face the fact that though we are better than we were; we are far from where we need to be. Until that happens, the United States will be a nation that is forever susceptible to outside attack. United States, united, under God, when we return to that mind set, then and only then we will see the change that we so desperately need.

    God bless Martin L King III and the sacrifice your family made for all of us.

    Jeannine

    April 3, 2008 at 9:35 pm |
  34. carmela

    Dear Mr. King:

    We are grateful to have had in our lifetime such a shining, bright, insightful leader who to this day continues to inspire not just Americans but the world. Thank-you for having and for continuing to share your dad with us.

    Carmela
    Toronto, Canada

    April 3, 2008 at 9:34 pm |
  35. Tam - Sacramento, CA

    Every day that I live and continue to breathe is a testament to your father's work. I could have devolved into the poverty that my parents knew as children, and succumbed to all the issues that poverty is the root of. But his work helped them overcome obstacles and allowed us to live a solidly middle class life when I was growing up. They now are able to enjoy retirement in relative financial comfort. It's hard to imagine that being possible if your father hadn't pursued equality for all citizens in this country.

    The only issue that I'd like to see explored more is the issue of persons of African descent being elevated to the status of being 5/5ths or a WHOLE person. My feeling is that issue is what continues to keep us in a "less than" status in this country. The energy has been set by the Constitution for this to be the case. People of African descent don't understand why others feel that its ok for us to be treated as less than equal. Some people of other races (SOME not all) don't understand why they should have to treat us as equals. That is because the Constitution has never been amended to upgrade us to whole person status – even though slavery was abolished and we're now free. Essentially, we're still legally second class citizens.

    The opportunity to rectify the inequity wasn't acted upon. The 13th, 14th, and 15th amendments don't address it. Therefore, we have the Voting Rights Act because someone who has been designated as non free and 3/5ths of a person (and only for apportionment purposes) didn't originally have the right to vote. Periodically, congress has to vote to make it possible for us to legally vote, even though we're born in and citizens of the U.S.A.

    Once we begin to understand that this is the root cause of racial tension in this country, we can begin to heal the wounds. The wording in the amendments is such that it isn't readily apparent that we still aren't WHOLE persons. Of course there are scholars who understand this. I guess many are reluctant to dive into those waters because of fears of civil unrest like in the 60s. I personally think that we have matured as a country enough to now have the discussion, rectify the inequity, and work toward making this country the greatest country in the world again. Remember, the rest of the world admired America for saying that discrimination must end. Its possible that she might restore her status globally if we just acknowledge that this is the root of our tensions and do something about it. I think only good things will result. I don't have my head in the sand, and understand that initially there will be much displeasure about airing the issue. There will be a major bump in the road, but we'll get over it. We really have come that far thanks to Dr. King.

    I love this country. I understand that we have problems. But I've also lived in other countries, and wouldn't trade the greatness of America for anything. I just think that we have a little more work to do to actualize the promise of this democracy – just like the founding fathers envisioned it. They couldn't foresee everything this country would need to govern itself. They made provisions for us to deal with situations as they became necessary. America is not yet as perfect as it can be, but change in the racial climate of this country is still necessary.

    April 3, 2008 at 9:33 pm |
  36. Sonya

    Hi Martin,

    My dream is the playing field for justice, employment,education and the social divides in America become lessened with the next 10 years. I am so proud of the King children and the continued fight for justice in the USA. Your parents and sister would be proud. Remember you aren't alone and we all fighting for a better equality and a better America. I too am a dreamer and a truthfighter for justice.

    Love your family and all who have paved the way for me to be the person I am today. To GOD be the Glory!

    April 3, 2008 at 9:28 pm |
  37. Lois VanWyk

    Thank God for Martin Luther King and his family. We are so blessed to have this family so committed to their country. I like the idea of a cabinet member @ poverty, but as a social worker for the last 15 years, I can tell you right now, what we need is birth control. And for families to address the issues of substance abuse, domestic violence and child abuse. This keeps families in poverty beause abused children struggle as adults, and pregnant teenagers and unwed mothers with children that don't even know who their fathers are , stuggle all their lives...this is the main problem and politicians can't fix that. I don't see our way out of this mess. Childhood issues lead to substance abuse, leads to more abuse, crime, etc etc.

    April 3, 2008 at 9:23 pm |
  38. Annie Kate

    Martin,

    Thank you for sharing with us on the blog. You write with your father's eloquence.

    Yes we have a lot of work left to achieve all of your father's dream – if we can conquer poverty it will be a triumph for all of us no matter what our race. Dr King was like a Biblical prophet sent to inspire us to act better, respect each other, and find justice for each other. I hope that I live long enough to see his message fulfilled.

    Annie Kate
    Birmingham AL

    April 3, 2008 at 9:11 pm |
  39. Carol B., Virginia

    Hi Martin, Thanks for sharing your thoughts with all of us. You and your family have done a wonderful job of carrying on your Father's legacy and addressing the genesis of older and newer social issues. Your idea for a cabinet officer to address domestic poverty makes a lot of sense. Hopefully, the candidates will agree to this. Take care.

    April 3, 2008 at 8:58 pm |
  40. Garry Lewis

    As a child growing up in the mid 50s and 60s I remember the fateful day of Dr Kings death and the sadness we all felt. My parents were racist's and I never understood the mentality of racism but such thinking was passed on from generation to generation. Ive always believed God makes us all in all colors shapes and sizes and teach my children those values. We are all here to lift each other up should our brother need a hand. Dr King was a beacon of light in a dark time and he made our world a better place with his teachings. I only regret that I never got to meet him personally and express my gratitude for all he gave our nation. I still get chills every time I hear his I have a dream speech.

    April 3, 2008 at 8:44 pm |
  41. Dan Ryan

    Mr. King–

    Thank you for reminding us what your father put so eloquently.

    I feel inspired to do more. I will seek opportunities to help the poor because of your comments.

    Thank you. God Bless You. Your Dad inspired so many.

    Dan

    April 3, 2008 at 8:22 pm |
  42. Rick

    Would your fathers dream include Obama's church contents? I am all for an African-American to be a commander in chief in the White House. It's time, i.e., America's racist past. Yet, I am VERY concerned about this matter. Is there a 'janus' face here?

    April 3, 2008 at 8:12 pm |
  43. Brandon

    I dont unstand !!Whats all the Black -History and MLK on CNN out of the blue??? It's not January?? I"m a person that thinks of Mr. King everyday of my life, just not on the day he was murdered?? I can't help but to put this with the News trying and Obama compain trying to Black-male Americans out of the right to vote!! We dont care who the winner is black,white,or red, but our Nation is dying and we need a proven Leader like Mrs. Clinton . What the Hell!!! what's all with the lets talk about blacks.Stop all this name calling and acting like a child folks. Can"t CNN News find some good news to report?? BY the way Obama is not anything like Mr. King!

    April 3, 2008 at 8:00 pm |
  44. Katherine

    Martin Luther King and Matahma Ghandi were two of the most powerful and peaceful men that I have great respect for after all these decades. I am a white woman in my 50's, as if that matters. I remember hearing about the civil rights movements years ago. Had I been older, I would have been there alongside many civil rights advocates, backing Dr. Martin Luther King in his quest. May his legacy live on forever and may our country remember NEVER to live in the past, but move on to the future and better our country! I admire Ghandi because he had compassion for animals as well as humans. That is something else our government has swept under the rug!

    April 3, 2008 at 7:44 pm |
  45. Tammy

    I believe that when a person dies, other souls are born to carry on that person's work. I was born on 05 April 1968, a day when many in America were mourning Dr. King. I just always have felt that my soul had an obligation to fight for social justice, peace, and love of all people carrying on in my own way for a great man who died a day before I came into the world. Every year of my life I will have a reminder of what greatness in a human can be and the type of person I should always strive to be. I'll always wonder how much greater of a nation we would have been had Dr. King lived. I'll always know we have an obligation to carry on his fight until we are all seen as equal in each other's eyes and treat each other as such.

    April 3, 2008 at 7:41 pm |
  46. Perilous

    Your father has always been one of my very greatest heroes.

    Thank you so much for your work and for your sacrifice.

    END POVERTY NOW! Let us all live and be free...and equal...together. There is no higher goal.

    Peace. Love is the way.

    April 3, 2008 at 7:33 pm |
  47. june

    MLK was one of a kind. He risked his life not for power, greed or recognition for himself, but because he truly believed he was doing what was right. he gave his life, and there will never be another quite like him. I'm a white Scottish/Canadian woman of 68 and I will never forget the effect his words had on me. Because of him I took an interest in politcs and have never stopped fighting injustice in my own small way. I see some of MLK in Barack Obama and it gives me some hope.

    April 3, 2008 at 7:32 pm |
  48. Eileen

    I remember the day so clearly. I cried, and cried, and cried. I was only 8. He was a great American hero. May we awaken to the dream someday. God Bless America!

    April 3, 2008 at 7:08 pm |
  49. Saera El Paso, TX

    that is very inspiring! also, i think the idea of appointing a poverty officer is a great one... has anyone thought of that before? it seems so obvious...

    April 3, 2008 at 6:56 pm |
  50. Cindy

    Martin,
    Thanks for taking the time to blog here for us today. And I totally agree I think that we have let poverty go on for WAY too long. It is about time that we get serious about eradicating it. It is a shame that in the greatest nation on the earth we allow people to go with out food, clothing or shelter when we have the money and where with all to do something about it. I hope that the candidates took you serious and the one that wins does set up a cabinet just to focus on ending poverty once and for all.

    Cynthia, Covington, Ga.

    April 3, 2008 at 6:50 pm |
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