Hated by some; loved and admired by millions.

by Sandi Waibel
Facilitator, Race Relations Committee and
Member of the African American History Club

2017 sketches of 4 MLK faces
Sketch by Lauren Tamaki

It is easy to forget that, until relatively recently, many white Americans loathed Dr. King. They perceived him as a rabble rouser and an agitator. Conversely, many African Americans hated him because he insisted on peaceful resolutions rather than violent ones.

Today, most of us tend to admire him and focus on his “I Have a Dream” speech in which he longed for the day when his children would “not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.” The Dr. King that many of us primarily remember is the leader of the Civil Rights movement for Blacks. But did you know:

  • In 1967 he denounced the Vietnam War.
  • He called for $30 billion annually in anti-poverty spending for all races.
  • He asked Congress to guarantee income for all Americans regardless of race.
  • In 1968 he planned the Poor People’s Campaign for impoverished Americans — Black, White, and Latino. Millions demonstrated in DC.

In Dr. King’s 1967 speech he declared, “Instead of policing their borders, nations should develop an overriding loyalty to mankind as a whole.” He was basically saying we should live together in peace.

The African American History Club (AAHC) is sponsoring a program intended to expand our recollections of Dr. King. It is a three-session program being held on three consecutive days following the current PGCC trimester. The program begins with the days of slavery and continues through to Dr. King’s death in 1968. The three-day event will be held on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, May 30 through June 1. Each session will take place from 10:00 a.m. till noon in the Village Square Classroom.

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