45th Anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Assassination


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By Senator Bert Johnson, Huffington Post

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

On April 4, 45 years ago, at 6:01 p.m., at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee, Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated at the age of 39.

Dr. King once said, “An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity.”

These words endure to this day. Though we’ve witnessed tremendous progress since segregation, the bus boycotts, the three marches on Selma, and the other events that shaped the course of civil rights in America, the work is not complete. Though we’ve taken major strides, we still must work to create our more perfect union.

Sadly, there are communities and people across the nation who are still disenfranchised and relegated to an unequal status. I am talking about a young black boy or girl struggling to overcome the institutional racism embedded in certain U.S. policies; or the Hispanic child of immigrant parents caught up in our broken immigration system; or our brother or sister in the LGBTQI community who lacks even the most simple of rights we enjoy…

As an affirmation of our duties to the common good and as a rallying cry for those feeling frustrated with incremental change and seemingly endless setbacks — particularly in Detroit where our people are distressed, demoralized and sick and tired of being sick and tired — I leave you with one last quote by Dr. King:

“I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality. This is why right, temporarily defeated, is stronger than evil triumphant.”

It’s also why today, 45 years after the assassination of one of our finest leaders, Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy lives on.

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