MLK: A day on; not a day off

  • Published
  • By Brig. Gen. Edward L. Bolton, Jr.
  • Commander, 45th Space Wing
Today I want to discuss the holiday on Monday, when the nation honors the memory of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. This year's theme - which never changes by the way - is "Remember! Celebrate! Act! A Day On, Not A Day Off!!"
Through his words and actions decades ago, Dr. King had a profound impact on millions of lives - mine included - and literally changed the face of America, and the way we all look at one another.
In August, 1963, he gave one of the most famous speeches of all time, doing so on the steps of the Lincoln Monument in front of hundreds of thousands gathered there and countless millions who watched on TV.
Those words spoken almost 50 years ago still inspire us today.
"I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal."...
"I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood." ...
"I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character."
These are just a couple eloquent lines Dr. King delivered that day.
Think about those words. Think about what they represent.
To me, they represent an equal playing field, where all of us - regardless of the color of our skin - have an equal chance to make it on our merits.
And that's really what it's all about, don't you think? It's my belief that most of us want to be responsible for what happens in our lives, and not let others dictate "how far" our talent, dedication to service, and initiative and drive can take us.
Dr. King felt the same way then.
It's my hope we all do still today.
Give him - and his message - some thought.
Thanks for all you do.