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Are we only helping others who look like us, or do we help those whose skin color may be different?

If we truly want to honor King, we’ll follow his path. It doesn’t have to be a grand march on Washington. It can be as simple as helping a neighbor, attending a public meeting, volunteering at a church or school, or voting.

The Martin Luther King Jr. holiday has become a day of service, a day to encourage volunteers.

However, the Baptist preacher and civil rights pioneer is remembered most for his dream.

That speech, one of the most famous in history, was delivered Aug. 28, 1963.

What you do today is not nearly as important as what you resolve to do. Resolve to have the “audacious faith” of which King spoke in 1964, when he accepted the Nobel Peace Prize:

“I accept this award today with an abiding faith in America and an audacious faith in the future of mankind. I refuse to accept the idea that the ‘isness’ of man’s present nature makes him morally incapable of reaching up for the eternal ‘oughtness’ that forever confronts him.

“I refuse to accept the idea that man is mere flotsam and jetsam in the river of life, unable to influence the unfolding of events which surround him.

“I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality.”

Dreams can come true if we have the commitment.

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January 19, 2014

Jacksonville Journal-Courier

Catalyst for civil rights still exists today

The photo is hard to look at, even still.

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