As we approach the Martin Luther King, Jr. annual holiday observance, states all over the globe including Georgia, are planning events, memorials, concerts and lectures, all in respect for this clergyman, activist and prominent leader for the African-American Civil Rights Movement.
This iconic man was known for his non-violent aspirations in fighting for justice and civil rights. His famous speech, “I Have a Dream” was presented following a March in Washington and he quickly became known as one of the most famous orators in American history. He was originally inspired by a visit to Mahatma Gandhi’s birthplace in India in 1959 and the deepening of his beliefs for non-violent activism became a stronghold for his ideals in life.
King’s contribution on promoting non-violent fighting for racial inequality earned him the illustrious Noble Peace Prize in October of 1964. In the following years, he also became involved in areas that would help combat poverty as well as voicing his concerns over the Vietnam War.
On April 4, 1968 Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee. Years after his death, he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1977 and the Congressional Gold Medal in 2004.
In 1986 Martin Luther King, Jr. Day was established as a US National Holiday.