History, Special Events, The Features

Fifty Years Later, the Dream Is Still Relevant

Fifty years ago today, the “moral leader of our country” (as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was introduced) delivered an astonishing, nation-changing message. It challenged all of us to re-examine our collective national conscience and dare to dream.

“I say to you today, my friends, though, even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream. I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up, live out the true meaning of its creed: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.’”

I think we can all agree there’s still work to be done. But without King’s tremendous address to the quarter-million people before him on the National Mall, a speech that was broadcast to the country, our work would be much, much harder.

King broke the dam, shattered the glass wall. Because of his words, his actions and those of the Civil Rights Movement, our country is a better place. Please take a moment today and read King’s words, let them soak into you. They’re still relevant today, regardless of color, creed, and any other descriptor you can think of that crafts a barrier to equality.

My thanks to Dr. King and all of the men and women who’ve fought for freedom, justice, and equality in this country over the course of history.

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Monumental: Martin Luther King Jr. National Memorial

Photo courtesy of
‘The ultimate measure of a man…………’
courtesy of ‘LaTur’

On Sunday (UPDATE: now sometime in September or October), the Martin Luther King Jr. National Memorial will be dedicated. As this will be the first major memorial dedicated in the Mall area since the National World War II Memorial in 2004, I thought it would be interesting to review the monument and solicit our readers’ views. For those interested in going to the dedication, the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Memorial Project Foundation has a FAQ page on the dedication ceremony and a handy walking directions pamphlet.

To quickly sum up my opinion: excellent, and long overdue, idea for a memorial, but it is poorly executed. Let me explain. I’ll be slightly kinder than Courtland Milloy but not by much and in some areas less (BTW: props to you, sir, on the Star Wars reference! Makings of a Millennial this one has.). Continue reading

Entertainment, Music, The Features, We Love Music

Living the Dream … Singing the Dream: Honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in Song

Photo courtesy of
‘Martin Luther King Memorial – The Eyes – 12-04-10′
courtesy of ‘mosley.brian’

It took 22 years of celebratory performances in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. before the grandest of vocal collaborations took place, but it was well worth the wait. This year’s Living the Dream … Singing the Dream took place on February 20 at the Kennedy Center and was the first-ever on-stage collaboration between the Washington Performing Arts Men, Women and Children of the Gospel Choir and The Choral Arts Society of Washington Choir.

Choral Arts has produced this annual musical tribute to Dr. King for over two decades with The Choral Arts Society Choir as the main attraction.

“It is a joyful and inspiring experience each year to celebrate [King’s] legacy with the great songs that were so central to his timeless message of peace and love among all peoples,” Choral Arts Founder and Artistic Director Norman Scribner said.

“We are especially happy this year to be joining with the Washington Performing Arts Society and their outstanding chorus of Men, Women and Children of the Gospel for an unforgettable remembrance of all that has been accomplished so far, and a re-dedication to an even brighter future for us all.” Continue reading