Reigniting Dr. King’s Dream in D.C.

On April 4, 1968, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated at the early age of 39 years old.

Despite his life being cut short far too soon, he left a lasting impact on communities of color across the

world, encouraging inclusiveness. Fifty years later, Dr. King’s dream is a reality and his fight for equality

continues to burn in the hearts of those who came together for the 04/04/2018 National Initiative to

Observe the 50th Anniversary of Dr. King’s Assassination. This movement attracted over 300 people and

Dash 1 .pngIntentionally took place in one of the most dangerous and impoverished neighborhoods in southeast

Washington, D.C. at the intersection of Martin Luther King Jr. Ave and Malcolm X Ave.

During this observance youth, activists, faith leaders, entertainers and political influencers all shared a mutual message that, “One bullet did not stop the movement.” Adrian Martinca, Founder and

President of Technology for the Future, emphasized that, “the future of our society is in the hands of our

children.” He expressed the importance of ensuring our youth are equipped with the necessary

technologies and resources to become successful. He also illustrated not only the importance of fulfilling

Dr. King’s dream, but also the importance of living out one’s own dream.

Upon taking the stage, award-winning DJ and WKYS 93.9 FM radio personality, QuickSilva

expressed that he was, “glad to know we are living Dr. King’s dream,” because his children are able to

play with those of other races in an integrated society. However, he urged leaders in attendance to, “make sure we do this same type of work 365 days a year...because there’s always somebody who needs our help.” He ended with a challenge to participates, “to go above and beyond not to get a pat

on the back, but because it matters in real life.”

Student leaders from Howard University’s Student Association, NAACP chapter and Standup.

Howard also had the opportunity to share their perspectives. They emphasized the ways younger

generations can use social media to connect with others and raise awareness about the issues that really matter. Sophomore, Mikayla Moore exclaimed, “we can’t diminish the power of stirring up conversation

and dialogue with people we don’t know on a global scale”.

Senior Jaclyn Grant also expressed the need to always be truthful in our words and actions, regardless of how unpopular it may seem. She went on to add that, “we have the ability, we have the power, we have the intellectual being to do more. I need us to do that in this space and in this time”.

Relatives and co-victims of gun violence shared their personal stories and reminded those in attendance that Dr. King was also a victim of gun violence. This proved that there is still work to be done to reform Gun Safety, Safe Passage and Human Rights laws.

Zion Kelly, the twin brother of a gun violence victim stated, “a senseless robbery took my

brother’s life.” Zion continued to add that his brother’s death was not in vain, and that he’s now doing the work to make sure our communities are safer and that everyone receives equal treatment.

At 6:05pm EST, the National Initiative observed a 39-second moment of silence while the event visionary, Tom Brown, struck a bell 39 times to represent the 39 years of Dr. King’s life. Participants were encouraged to “go live” on their social media to bring global awareness to the historic moment using #04042018.

This event served as an opportunity to reflect on Dr. King’s legacy, restore faith in our communities, redirect our focus to revitalizing what is now a “fractured” nation and reigniting Dr. King’s dream. One bullet did not stop the movement and it will not stop the progress to come.

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| 71 views | April, 30th, 2018

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