Monday, December 22, 2014

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The Call Blog: Events Held Across Country to Mark 50th Anniversary of March on Washington

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It's amazing to see the strides we've made as a nation since that march 50 years ago. And it's still humbling to hear Dr. King's message, which still resonates with America today. We still have a lot of work to do to ensure all people are truly equal. There are a lot of different fights now - some of the same ones as well - that we need to address.

Fifty years to the day after Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his historic “I Have a Dream” speech, thousands braved the rainy weather to gather at the National Mall to mark the March on Washington. Political, labor and civil rights leaders urged the crowd to keep fighting for equality. Speaking on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial today exactly where Dr. King once stood, President Obama said while great progress has been made in advancing voting rights and other areas, much work still remains in addressing economic inequality and unemployment among minorities.

Tonight, community leaders here in the City will discuss the need to continue the fight for justice as well, including ending the NYPD’s Stop, Question and Frisk policy. Other events in the City included a special screening of Dr. King’s entire speech in Times Square. Church bells also rang out at The Cathedral Church of Saint John the Divine, one of 300 churches across the country that marked the moment the speech was delivered.

Fifty years after the March on Washington, how far have we come as a nation? What was your reaction to President Obama’s speech today? What social justice issues do you think need to be addressed? Do you think the stop-and-frisk policy discriminates against minorities? If you attended the 1963 march or the one today, tell us what it was like for you.

Reply with your thoughts using the link above.

I personally think that all of these politicians are going to do
nothing but grand stand once again.
Why only show up today. They had years to try to at least
help the children in some way.
They just are a complete turnoff.

Morris Park

It seems the blacks in this city are using Martin Luther King's legacy as leverage to create an obstacle against fighting crime. This race based ideology is doomed to failure and they have no else to blame but themselves......

Park Hill

President Obama gave a wonderful speech 50 years ago no one thought we would have a black president we still have a longs ways to go to fight racism thje NYPD needs to put a end to stop and frisk because the cops are arresting mostly minority people i am african american i never been arrested but some cops are arresting the minority people for no reason

Upper West Side

There has certainly been progress - a black president! - but we still have a long way to go, as evidenced by stop and frisk (racial profiling) - 700,000 plus stops leading to 11% arrests, and now racial and religious profiling of Muslims - 6 years of unconstitutional surveillance leading to ZERO leads on terrorists. Dr. King would be appalled at what the NYPD has been doing.


I think the President's speech was about evading the real problems of black folks. We still are not employed nor educated as equals to whites and we are still blamed for conditions put upon us. We have not gotten any closer to equality today than 50 years ago.
Nonetheless I am not a quitter.


Unless the discussion shifts to focus on the problems within the black community- people having multiple children they can't afford to take care of emotionally or financially- as well as self responsibility and making smart choices with their lives, we will still be focusing on these issues decades from now. I notice how the Pres never addresses this issue; he'd rather keep people tethered to govt food stamps and housing subsidies so they'll vote Democratic.

We have made great progress across the board in the area of equality particularly in the way people treat each other. We are as a nation more accepting of each others differences and we embrace multiculturalism as an integral part of our society. In this way, we have moved in the right direction. Now, our politicians need to work harder to guarantee economic programs that translate this progress into total success for all.


One major issue that desperately needs to be addressed in America is reducing gun violence. Dr. King himself was shot and it is unacceptable that 33,000 Americans are killed every year as a result of our lax gun control laws. Congress is long overdue to pass legislation to make us safer enact stricter gun control laws without it interfering with Second Amendment rights, and there are ways to do that. I think we have A LOT of work ahead of us to make this country a better place, one that puts peace and common sense first.

Midtown East

Martin Luther King Jr.'s dream was remembered in Washington D.C.on August 28th. I myself remembered 1963 and watched the march on Washington on TV and back than I saw history being made. Martin Luther King Jr. brought his dream to America and America heard it loud and clear. Much has been accomplished in Civil Rights as President Obama is the fruits of that dream. Yet more jobs are needed for black Americans who lag behind whites who are also unemployed. Poverty is still a problem for black Americans and must be look at for possible solutions. The dream is still alive and must be fullfilled. As Martin Luther King Jr. said," This is not the end but the beginning." So let freedom ring so one day we can all say," Free at last, free at last, thank God almighty we are free at last."

Glen Oaks Village

It's shocking to me that the networks did not recognize the importance of the March on Washington by devoting their program day to covering the original march period (with Dr. King's speech) and today's activities. This could have been a great day to teach young people something about economic and racial -- and CLASS -- divisions in this country.
Good for you for doing this call-in!


Nice to see president carter and clinton there with president Obama, even more touching was it to see presidents Kennedy and Johnson's daughters representing their fathers, for If it wasnt for those two great men, especially Johnson - where would we be today? Not sure why Oprah Winfrey was there, seems to be too in tandem with the release of her movie and cheapened the event a tad.

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