Last week we paid homage to the sacrifices our African American elders made 50 years ago by reliving the March on Washington. We walked, sang songs and gave speeches to commemorate the incredible sacrifices made by African Americans. They marched so we could have the basic inalienable rights to freely pursue any opportunities afforded other Americans including the right to vote, live in any neighborhood, and pursue any career. One of the most famous songs of the March On Washington is "We Shall Overcome". Many believe that the dream has not been realized and we still need to overcome!
WE HAVE REALIZED THE DREAM!
Fifty years ago, our parents and grandparents spent their day worrying about discrimination at every turn - at work, in the store or merely traveling from one destination to another. We don't have to make a decision whether to sit in the back of the bus or defy the law and sit in the front. We don't have to go in a restaurant and wonder if they will serve us. We can drink from any water fountain available to the public. We don't have to worry about being lynched merely due to the color of our skin. When you spend every waking moment worrying about surviving that kind of reality you can't begin to think about pursuing your dreams!
WE HAVE OVERCOME!
Fifty years later, we have the ability to dream of a better life without the fear of being beaten, rejected or killed. Now we can spend our time, thoughts, conversations & energy on pursuing positive life options. We can raise our voice! We can vote an African American into the White House! We can become successful doctors, lawyers, actors, entertainers, athletes, astronauts, teachers and more! We can marry who we want, live where we want, and focus on making a better life for our families!
Will their be hardships, denial of rights, discrimination and unnecessary barriers? You bet. But our history shows we can survive and thrive. Our history shows we are a strong people with the ability to pursue ANY dream!
OUR NEW DREAM
Our new struggle is CHOOSING TO LIVE THE DREAM! We have to believe we do not need the approval of any race to have the license for greatness. We have everything we need to march forward in our own path. We need to honor the past but move toward our future.
Fifty years ago, Martin Luther King dreamed for every race, creed & color to march together in unity. Fifty years later, we completed that dream. Fifty years from now, we will realize we have overcome more obstacles and achieved success for all people including our own.
As long as we believe its possible, WE CAN MAKE OUR OWN DREAMS - REALITY!
Written by Kennan Cooley
Kennan Cooley is a writer, television and video producer, marketing and public relations specialist and a proud mom!
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