Born in Atlanta, Georgia on January 15, 1929, the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. has become an icon and foundation of racial equality, harmony, tolerance, and justice — believing that black and white people can co-exist with one another. A man of God that has also become a symbol for nonviolence and peace: a tireless crusader against injustice and oppression.
King was the youngest person ever to win the Nobel Peace Prize for his work in 1964. He has paved the way for the civil rights movement throughout the 1950s and 1960s that included the 1955 Montgomery Bus Boycott and the March on Washington, which led to his famous “I Have a Dream” speech on August 28, 1963. Some stated that the 45th anniversary of this speech was divine intervention when future President-elect Barack Obama decided to accept the Democratic Party nomination to run — believing that it was time for a change.
Before his death on April 4, 1968, he was speaking out against the Vietnam War and dedicated himself to end poverty, and this led to the development of the “Poor People’s Campaign” with the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), in which he helped found and became its first president.
Dr. King was partially the inspiration for Professor Charles Xavier, the leader of the Marvel Comics mutant superhero group The X-Men. Xavier was both a visionary and a pacifist with the mission that all mutants can work together and co-exist with humans despite living in a world where they’re feared and hated for being “different”. King was also the influence of the Rev. Al Sharpton and the Rev. Jesse Jackson, in whom he tried to run for President in 1984 and then in 1988.
Though it has been forty years since his death, King’s legacy continues to live on. In 1986, it was declared that every third Monday of January is known as “Martin Luther King, Jr.” Day. The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was more than a philosopher. He was one man living in two worlds that was based on the color of your skin, yet was determined to build bridges and make those two worlds into one. He still believed that “The time is ripe to do right”, and never let hatred nor evil overcame him but made sure that he overcame with love and goodness that reigned through him from God.
Dr. King was a revolutionary, a soldier, a leader, a servant, and a champion.