Alabamians reflect on the 'I Have a Dream' speech 50th anniversa - WSFA.com Montgomery Alabama news.

Alabamians reflect on the 'I Have a Dream' speech 50th anniversary

Posted: Updated:
Myrna Jackson speaks to Mike Dubberly about the effects of the movement on her life. Source: WBRC video Myrna Jackson speaks to Mike Dubberly about the effects of the movement on her life. Source: WBRC video
  • More newsMore>>

  • Smiths Station teacher hit by train, condition unknown

    Smiths Station teacher hit by train, condition unknown

    Monday, July 28 2014 2:41 PM EDT2014-07-28 18:41:22 GMT
    We have heard from multiple sources that a teacher was hit by a train Monday, July 28 in Phenix City. At this time, we have a crew on the scene and are waiting for officials to confirm more details.More >>
    We have heard from multiple sources that a teacher was hit by a train Monday, July 28 in Phenix City. At this time, we have a crew on the scene and are waiting for officials to confirm more details. A state patrol officer on the scene says that the occupant or occupants were taken to a hospital, and their status is unknown at this time.More >>
  • Deal to improve veterans' health care costs $17B

    Deal to improve veterans' health care costs $17B

    Monday, July 28 2014 2:30 PM EDT2014-07-28 18:30:33 GMT
    After more than six weeks of sometimes testy talks, House and Senate negotiators have agreed on a compromise plan to fix a veterans health program scandalized by long patient wait times and falsified records...More >>
    A bipartisan deal to improve veterans' health care would authorize at least $17 billion to fix the health program scandalized by long patient wait times and falsified records covering up delays, the bill's chief...More >>
  • Israeli PM speaks of 'prolonged' campaign in Gaza

    Israeli PM speaks of 'prolonged' campaign in Gaza

    Monday, July 28 2014 2:16 PM EDT2014-07-28 18:16:39 GMT
    Israel and Hamas have lowered the pace of the fighting in the three-week-old Gaza war as international efforts intensify to end the conflict that has already killed 1,030 Palestinians and 43 Israeli soldiers.More >>
    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Monday that Israel must be ready for a "prolonged" military operation in the Gaza Strip and will "act aggressively and responsibly" until the mission is completed.More >>
BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) -

Over the last several days, our nation's capital has seen a series of events observing the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington for racial equalit.

The highlight of that civil rights demonstration was the famous speech delivered by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Much of the planning for the march was organized at meetings right here in Alabama. And for those who took part in the process and had weathered earlier demonstrations, there was a sense of pride to see it come to fruition.

James Smith and Robert Avery hitchhiked their way to Washington, D.C. from Gadsden.

"Once [Dr. King] stood up, you could hear crickets...drinking in his words," Smith said.

Just 12 hours prior to the speech, King wasn't sure what he was going to say. Preparation for the speech had taken a back seat to planning the march. So, many elements of his "I Have a Dream" speech came from others he had given before. But this time the words resonated across the country on TV and radio.

"I had heard those words before. I was excited he was saying them in front of all those people," Catherine Burks-Brooks said.

Back in Birmingham, teenagers like Myrna Jackson and Janice Kelsey could hear hope in those words.

"The speech was important because it opened the eyes of so many people," Jackson said. "This was an opportunity to show we are quite similar."

The speech did draw criticism from some black leaders like Malcolm X, who said it compromised too much. But Dr. Calvin Woods says it struck just the right balance.

Many FOX6 spoke to say the full dream is not yet fulfilled, but seeing parts of King's vision become reality offers them a sense of pride.

"I meet people all over the world and invariable they tell me the impact of the speech on their life," Dr. Bernice King, King's daughter, said.

After his speech, King was named Man of the Year 1963 and 1964 by "Time" magazine and was the youngest person awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

Copyright 2013 WBRC. All rights reserved.

Powered by WorldNow