Politic365

 
 


Culture

5:39pm June 26, 2013

Bernice A. King: Activating Beyond the Dream to Commemorate 50th Anniversary of March

The Rev. Bernice King

On the heels of U.S. Supreme Court decisions on affirmative action and voting rights, Dr. Bernice A. King, daughter of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., called upon all Americans to “make certain connections in this 50th anniversary year” of the March on Washington. Joined by a group of august leaders during a luncheon event hosted by AT&T’s Tanya Lombard, King espoused her vision for what the commemoration of the 1963 March means.

“There are thousands, perhaps millions, of young people who don’t fully realize how that time period [the civil rights era] connects with who they are today, the opportunities that they have today, and their responsibility to continue in the freedom struggle for those who come behind them,” King told Politic365 during an exclusive interview.

“My vision is to see that we use this as a great moment to educate young people about the movement, about where we are today, and with the recent [Supreme Court] ruling,” she continued, “it gives us a wonderful teachable moment.”

The irony of the high court’s Shelby County v. Holder ruling, which effectively gutted the Voting Rights Act, coming out 48 years after the original march is not lost on King, who sees the decision as a rallying cry for renewed civic engagement. “This happened in your time, in your generation. This is not something that happened way back then,” she proclaimed.

On Wednesday, August 28, 1963 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. led the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom where he delivered his famed I Have a Dream speech to roughly 300,000 rally participants on the National Mall. The march is credited by many as being a necessary aid to passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

Fifty years later, Dr. Bernice King, President and CEO of The King Center for Nonviolent Social Change, is orchestrating a four-day conference, celebration and remembrance ceremony to help activate the next generation of civil rights advocates.  Beginning on August 25th and ending on Wednesday, August 28, 2013, the commemorative includes a collegiate conference, march reenactment, church service, K-12 virtual tour about the civil rights movement, panel discussions, a festival and a concert. In addition to inviting live participation in the event, King is looking to engage broader audiences by using social media and tech-focused outreach strategies across all four days of the event.

The message for this year’s celebration is clear:  it’s time to move beyond the dream and engage a new generation in new and meaningful ways. “I don’t like the word dream because I don’t want people to stay in a dream-like state,” King said. “I prefer words like activate.  We’ve got to be sharp in this moment.”

Holding strong to tenets of engagement beyond the voting booth, non-violence and educational achievement, and realizing the important role that technology plays in the modern civil rights movement, Dr. King is laser-focused that this year’s celebration be looked at not only as a recollection of the past, but also as a movement toward the future.

“We have to take time to educate and inform the next generation about their responsibility outside of voting, and show them how to have a strong voice that makes a difference. Yes, your vote does count,” she said,” but it’s the collective voices that get heard, that are engaged consistently, because if you just vote and go back home, you get ignored.”

 



About the Author

Kristal High
Kristal Lauren High co-founded and serves as Editor in Chief of Politic365. She also operates her own communications and creative engagement company. Prior to launching the publication, Kristal developed an expertise in broadband adoption among minority, low-income and underserved populations through her work with the Minority Media and Telecommunications Council and the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies’ Media & Technology Institute. Throughout her career, Kristal has worked with national civil rights and civic associations, business leaders, minority elected officials, and Fortune 500 brands on an array of issues pertaining to the leveraged use of the Internet for online coalition building, stakeholder outreach, political advocacy and multimedia production. For her efforts in online advocacy and web publishing, Kristal received the New York Urban League Young Professionals Digital Renaissance Award and the NAACP’s Leadership 500 Chairman’s Leadership Award. She was also named to the Digital Sisterhood Network’s Top 100 Digital Sisters of the Year and received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Black Broadcaster’s Association. Kristal is also the recipient of the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation's Excellence in Communications award, and has been named to two top 40 Under 40 lists - the Lawyers of Color Hot List and the National Bar Association's/IMPACT Nation's Best Advocates list.




 
 

 
6316413344_309861dd7d_b

Senate passes bill expanding drug war with Transnational Drug Trafficking Act

On Monday, the Senate passed the Transnational Drug Trafficking Act, which expands the war on drugs. This law gives the Justice Department the authority to prosecute drug traffickers from foreign countries. The law also ensures...
by Adriana Maestas
0

 
 
193624822_de6bb92462_z

Government funding bill with Wall Street giveaways passes in House

On Thursday night, the House of Representatives voted to pass a government funding bill, but some of the more progressive members of the House stood in opposition to this spending bill because it contained policy riders that be...
by Adriana Maestas
1

 
 
5708625905_502f6d8f08_b

Latino support for President Obama up, and majority of Americans still support path to legalization

The Pew Research Center for the People and the Press released some new data today from a recently conducted survey that shows a mixed response from the public for the President’s recent executive action expanding the numb...
by Adriana Maestas
0

 

Advertisement
 
4bill

Four Ferguson Related Bills in Congress

Four Ferguson Related Bills in Congress. This week will likely be the last week of the 113th Congress. When Congress reconvenes again in January, Republicans will control both the House and the Senate. But the last week of a C...
by Lauren Victoria Burke
1

 
 
eric3

First #Ferguson Bill Set to Become Law: Deaths in Custody Reporting Act

First Piece of #Ferguson Related Legislation Passes Congress and Will Become Law. H.R. 1447, the Death in Custody Reporting Act, authored by Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA), passed the Senate (Wednesday) tonight and is on its way to be...
by Lauren Victoria Burke
1

 




One Comment



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>