University Park, IL,
13:27 PM

We Are the Legacy of Dr. King's Dream

Dr. David Golland, Professor of History at Governors State University, writes in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Today we remember and mourn the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., an icon of civil rights and one of America’s great leaders.

At a time of deep division in this country, Dr. King reminded us what we all have in common. His assassination, 50 years ago today, was a tragedy for all Americans.

We still live in a nation divided. Increasing polarization pervades our politics, our media, our houses of worship, our organizations. Far too often we demonize the “other,“ whether that person has a different faith, skin color, political position, or social status. Far too often we demonize those who think differently, look differently, act differently.

In this time of division, let us reflect on the truly transformative life and teachings of Dr. King.

Dr. King urged us to look to the better angels of our nature. That the lion could lie down with the lamb. That we must forge partnerships across the lines in our lives. The Christian must celebrate the Muslim, the Democrat embrace the Republican. We can best honor Dr. King's memory by forming true partnerships across lines that need not divide us.

I believe we can do that together. I believe that when we do, we will have removed the power of that assassin's bullet fifty years ago, and together we will be the legacy of Dr. King's dream.

David Golland, Ph.D. 
Professor of History
Governors State University