Celebrating MLK Day & Black History Month: Reflections from APB Speakers

While every MLK day and Black History Month are important, this year’s commemoration is especially significant following the changing tides in American history. American Program Bureau (APB), founded in 1965, is honored to have worked with Rev. King and many of the leaders of the Civil Rights Movement from that time to the present.

We’ve invited some of them to share their thoughts on Martin Luther King Day and Black History Month with us. Their responses provide insight into an incredible man and movement:

Reverend Jesse Jackson | Legendary Civil Rights Activist & Politician

“I was blessed to be part of a small group of individuals who celebrated Dr. King’s last birthday with him. The time was January 1968, and we were in Atlanta, in the basement of the Ebenezer Baptist Church. We spent it challenging the methods of the powerful, the waste of war, and the need for a poor people’s campaign. Dr. King saw the world from the bottom up, and not the top down, and measured our moral worth not by what we accumulated but by what we share, and how we treat the least of these. We honor the poor people’s imperative and measure character by how we treat the least of these.”

Mary Frances Berry | Author, Historian & Former Chair of the US Civil Rights Commission

“Martin would find ways to afflict the comfortable and comfort the afflicted in a…world where war dominates, peace remains elusive and unemployment and hard times stalk the land.”

Juan Williams | Award-Winning Journalist

“Dr. King lives. Despite the recession and struggles for educational equity, America has never seen more progress on King’s dream of racial equality in a nation more racially mixed than ever.”

Susan L. Taylor | Founder & CEO, National CARES Mentoring Movement & Former Editor of Essence Magazine

“I feel that I got to know Dr. King not just through what I’ve read by and about him, but also through the wonderful stories Coretta Scott King would share with me about him. Oh, how she loved her Martin…Commemorating Dr. King’s birthday is very special to me. I just love speaking about him and encouraging us to recommit to the ideals he had dedicated his life to: fostering peace, justice and healing our ailing world. And I believe we will succeed–for the children.”

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