Martin Luther King Junior and MLK Day – What Does it Mean to Dobie and Others

Martin+Luther+King+Junior+and+MLK+Day+-+What+Does+it+Mean+to+Dobie+and+Others

Sarah K Mueller, Micaiah Hubbard, and Disaya Vinthaxay

Martin Luther King Jr. is an important part of history. Ask any person in America and many of them will have something to say about him or how he affected their lives. They have things that they would have said to him or his haters. And if they could go back in time they totally would have supported!

 

Who Was Martin Luther King Jr.?

To completely understand Martin and what he did to people we need to talk about who he was first. We know the basic stuff about Martin luther King Jr. but digging deeper you can find lots more interesting facts and things about his background.

According to Britannica, “King came from a comfortable middle-class family steeped in the tradition of the Southern black ministry: both his father and maternal grandfather were Baptist preachers. His parents were college-educated, and King’s father had succeeded his father-in-law as pastor of the prestigious Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta. The family lived on Auburn Avenue, otherwise known as ‘Sweet Auburn,’ ” said Britannica. 

 According to NPR  “Today, the nation remembers Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. He helped lead the fight for civil rights and equality that changed this country. Decades after his assassination, his message continues to inspire a new generation. This weekend, African American and Jewish high school students here in Washington, D.C. got together to talk about Dr. King’s legacy,” said  NPR.

 

Impact

King made sure that his thoughts were heard and never stopped trying to make his and others lives better. Because of this, he affected many people who were alive at the time and people for generations to come.

Jack Weaver is a grandfather of 10 and was 21 when MLK was assassinated. “Considering how old I was and where I was in my life, when he made his speech my experience with people of color was maybe two or three individuals do to segregation,” said Weaver. 

Weaver said he didn’t have a lot of exposure to Black people. “Where I was living and where I was raised it was not as big of a problem because we had no black people near us. There were maybe two that I knew before I joined the army.”

But things changed for Weaver when King died “His assassination had a direct affect on me because I was in Vietnam at the time and it caused a lot of fights between the white men. The few blacks that I did know at that time I would trust with my whole life so he impacted me in that way.” said Weaver.

But even this generation has been impacted by things he did and said what seems so long ago to them. Elijah Johnson is a 7th grader at Dobie “What Martin has done to impact me is I realize that I probably wouldn’t be here without him. I wouldn’t be able to go to this school,” said Johnson. Anthony Morris is in 8th grade at Dobie. “I wouldn’t be here right now and lots of people wouldn’t have good jobs and there wouldn’t be good opportunities for young people,” said Morris.

 

MLK Day

MLK day means as much to people as Martin himself does. Some people celebrate it and others use it as a day to remember him and what he did for us. Mr. Wetz is a 7th grade social studies teacher at Dobie “MLK day is a day of remembrance for a man who martyr of the civil rights movement. This day hopefully inspires people about their character and not just their skin color,” said Mr. Wetz.  Elijah Jonnson is a 7th grader at Dobie Junior High “MLK Day isn’t really celebrated anymore but it should be because it’s really super important,” said Johnson.

 

Would We Support?

With his background and what they know about King, it’s easy to wonder what Dobie students would’ve done if they were there. Nia Mitchell is a 7th grader at Dobie Junior High school. “I would have supported him because segregation has gone on for many years and I support his efforts to stop it,” Mitchell said. Lots of people would have supported! Janea Francis is in 8th grade at Dobie “Yes I would have supported because he made a huge difference in the world,” said Francis. Annaise Aponte-Banton is an 8th grader at Dobie Junior High  “Yeah I would have because I believe in what he believed in,” Said Aponte-Banton.

 

Haters

Many famous people have haters and Martin definitely did. Mr. Wetz is a 7th grade social studies teacher at Dobie “Those people who hate or hated him need to look at the big picture. They had to go through growing pains and give up power. We still have racist people to this day,” said Mr. Wetz. And in most people’s minds, there’s no reason to hate him. Shaylin Silva is an 8th grader at Dobie Junior High “There’s no reason to hate him because he was really inspirational and just changed people’s point of view,” said Silva.

 

What Would You Say?

Just as we would say things to King’s haters, we would say things to him too. Madison Gastol is in 7th grade at Dobie “If I could talk to Martin Luther King, I would ask him what inspired him to keep trying even though he knew that there might not be a change. I know it was probably really hard to keep fighting when all of history points towards you failing,”  said Gastol.

Fran Weaver is a grandmother of 10 and was in high school when King was fighting for rights. “If I could say anything to him it would be thank you for what you did for people and for changing points of view, including mine.” said Weaver “When this was going on I was in high school in the deep south. We had two black girls and one black young man that came to our school last year and the National Guard had to escort them in to integrate black and white at school. The whole time I thought it was very silly but I didn’t say anything because at the time I was extremely shy and it didn’t take much to embarrass me. I was also living in a place where they were looked down upon.”

Weaver remembers how the other girls treated the two different from themselves. “One day I was in one of the bathroom stalls at school and I overheard some girls chatting loudly until one of the black girls walked in. Everything stopped. I remember thinking how awful it must be for that poor girl, people reacted that way just to her walking into a room. I thought it was very mean and hurtful. From that afternoon forward I really stopped seeing color and only saw people.” said Weaver. 

 

Where Would We Be?

Life without the history of Martin Luther King Jr is hard to imagine and many believe it could be chaos. A’liyah Fulton is in 7th grade at Dobie “The world without Martin Luther would be chaotic and have people that are not of color thinking they are better when really everyone is equal. Yes there are still some people who believe that people of color are nothing and shouldn’t do the same as non colored people but it isn’t as bad as it was before or bad as it could have been if it wasn’t for him.” Said Fulton 

Joyce Hubbard is a grandmother of 9 and was in 4th grade when King was assassinated  “Well I was a child and I can remember not being able to be served at certain places in my own town, we heard on the news that he was trying to make changes to that. I didn’t understand it because I was just a kid but I could tell by my parents he was changing things for black people. I remember feeling safe because my parents kept us from water fountains and restrooms and different places were color people couldn’t go. When he got assassinated,  I was in a fourth grade classroom when teachers started to cry all the way down the hallway and they were praying. Has I got older I started to realize there was a lot of inequality with race and it really affected me that he fought for those rights. I couldn’t be where I am now without him,” said Hubbard.

Martin Luther King Junior is important to almost everyone because of how much sacrifice he made for everyone to be treated equally. He was an amazing man who should and hopefully will be honored every year in January. Not just on that special day of his, but every day. He stood up for what he believed was right and ended up changing our world for the better and helping to start a world where everyone is equal. 

 

                                            In Honor of Martin Luther King Junior

                                                               1929-1968