"I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of creed: We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal." Martin Luther King Jr. August 28th 1963. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was a man who fought for equal rights for African Americans, as well as for other races. Many believe he is one of the most influential people in all of history. Martin Luther King Jr. helped shape the civil rights movement by supporting the use of nonviolence to get equal rights for African Americans and many other races.
Martin Luther King Junior's influences further helped black Americans and many other races. Civil rights leader, theologian and educator Howard Thurman was an early influence on King. Benjamin E. Mays, president of Morehouse and a leader in the national community of racially liberal clergymen, was impeccably influential in shaping King's theological development. After King talked to some of Gandhi's followers, he was convinced that non-violence was the strongest way to help people to freedom. Walter Fluker, who has studied Thurman's writings has stated. "I don't believe you'd have a Martin Luther King, Jr. without a Howard Thurman." Martin Luther King based many of his ideas off of pastors as well as his parents.
Once King knew what he wanted done, he helped Rosa Parks with the Montgomery Bus Boycott of 1955. In March 1955 a 15 year old school girl, Claudette Calvin, refused to give up her bus seat to a white man in compliance with the Jim Crow laws. King was on the committee from the BAA community that looked at the case. They instead decided to choose a more solid case. They chose Rosa Park's case. The organization met again and decided to call themselves the Montgomery Improvement Association (MIA). They elected King as president. King agreed to head the organization leading to the boycott. The boycott of the Montgomery buses lasted 385 days and the situation became so tense that King's house was bombed by a mob of angry whites.
King began making speeches with omnipotent ideas and many soon to be famous quotes as well as many irenic protests. One of his most incomparable events ever was The March on Washington in 1963. King directed the peaceful march on Washington D.C., of 250,000 people to whom he delivered his address, "I have a Dream". King, representing SCLC, was among the leaders of the so-called "Big Six" civil rights organizations who were instrumental in the organization of the march on Washington for jobs and freedom in 1963. The primary logistical and strategic organizer was King's colleague Bayard Rustin. The march originally was conceived as an event to dramatize the desperate condition of blacks in the southern United States and a very public opportunity to place organizers' concerns and grievances squarely before the seat of power in the nation's capital."…And so let freedom ring, from the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire. Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsylvania. Let freedom ring from the snow-capped Rockies of Colorado. Let freedom ring from the curvaceous slopes of California. But not only that Let freedom ring from Tennessee. Let freedom ring from every hill and molehill of Mississippi. From every mountainside, let freedom ring. And when we allow freedom to ring- when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city. We will be able to speed up that day when all of god's children, black men and white men, Jews and gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sin in the words of Old Negro Spiritual: Free at last, free at last. Thank god almighty, we are free at last." Martin Luther King 1963.
"I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality. This is why, temporarily defeated is stronger than evil triumphant." Martin Luther King Jr. Nobel Peace Prize quote from acceptance speech 1964. In 1965 king was awarded the American Liberties medallion by the American Jewish committee for his "exceptional advancement of the principals of human liberty." More than 730 cities in the United States have streets named after King. King was awarded at least 50 honorary degrees from colleges and universities. King's most grand award was the Nobel Peace Prize. King was awarded 50 honorary degrees from colleges and universities from across the country. Dr. Martin Luther King shaped the civil rights movement a great deal and will always be remembered in the hearts of every American for his devotion and drive to stand up for what he believed in and for changing the lives of every person on this planet.