Brainstorm Ways Your Family Can Make A Difference
Remind kids that Dr. King worked hard and was willing to give of himself to benefit a cause. You can choose a specific cause that interests your kids and give back together. One of our favorites: The ASPCA. If your kids are serious animal lovers and want to protect their furry friends, consider contacting your local ASPCA to lend a hand at a shelter. Get more inspiration of ways to serve by visiting the AmeriCorps MLK Day of Service website and searching for volunteer opportunities in your community.
Why Its Mlk Day Celebrated Today
The holiday has become a call to action, “a day on, not a day off,” the only federal holiday designated as a day of national service. All Americans are encouraged to volunteer to improve their communities. The theme and call to action, for the 2021 Observance is The Urgency of Creating the Beloved Community!
- Tagged in:
Selma Voting Rights Movement And Bloody Sunday 1965
In December 1964, King and the SCLC joined forces with the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee in Selma, Alabama, where the SNCC had been working on voter registration for several months. A local judge issued an injunction that barred any gathering of three or more people affiliated with the SNCC, SCLC, DCVL, or any of 41 named civil rights leaders. This injunction temporarily halted civil rights activity until King defied it by speaking at Brown Chapel on January 2, 1965. During the 1965 march to Montgomery, Alabama, violence by state police and others against the peaceful marchers resulted in much publicity, which made racism in Alabama visible nationwide.
Acting on James Bevel‘s call for a march from Selma to Montgomery, Bevel and other SCLC members, in partial collaboration with SNCC, attempted to organize a march to the state’s capital. The first attempt to march on March 7, 1965, at which King was not present, was aborted because of mob and police violence against the demonstrators. This day has become known as Bloody Sunday and was a major turning point in the effort to gain public support for the civil rights movement. It was the clearest demonstration up to that time of the dramatic potential of King and Bevel’s nonviolence strategy.
Recommended Reading: Dirty 30 Birthday Party Ideas For Him
Assassination Of Martin Luther King Jr
The events in Selma deepened a growing rift between Martin Luther King Jr. and young radicals who repudiated his nonviolent methods and commitment to working within the established political framework.
As more militant Black leaders such as Stokely Carmichael rose to prominence, King broadened the scope of his activism to address issues such as the Vietnam War and poverty among Americans of all races. In 1967, King and the SCLC embarked on an ambitious program known as the Poor Peoples Campaign, which was to include a massive march on the capital.
On the evening of April 4, 1968, . He was fatally shot while standing on the balcony of a motel in Memphis, where King had traveled to support a sanitation workers strike. In the wake of his death, a wave of riots swept major cities across the country, while President Johnson declared a national day of mourning.
James Earl Ray, an escaped convict and known racist, pleaded guilty to the murder and was sentenced to 99 years in prison. He later recanted his confession and gained some unlikely advocates, including members of the King family, before his death in 1998.
Why Is Martin Luther King Jr Day Not On His Birthday
Martin Luther King Jr. was born on January 15, 1963, but his birthday is not the only reason why the holiday became a nationwide celebration.
When Representative John Conyers, D-Mich., introduced legislation for a federal holiday four days after his assassination in 1968, it marked the start of an informal commemoration to honor Dr. Kings life.
The following year on Dr. Kings birthday, annual ceremonies were launched by The King Center in Atlanta.
The center called for nationwide ceremonies and began working to gain support for the holiday.
The day became a federal holiday in 1983 when President Ronald Reagan signed the bill into law.
Yet, the holiday was first formally celebrated in 1986.
At first, some states resisted observing the holiday, but in the year 2000, all 50 states decided to honor it.
The celebration does not only aim to honor Dr. Kings birthday but all the civil rights advances he chartered while being alive.
Although, the holiday sometimes lands on Dr. Kings birthday depending on the calendar.
The latest date the holiday can be celebrated is January 21.
Don’t Miss: Things To Do For Your Birthday In Austin
What Is Martin Luther King Jr Day
BAY COUNTY, Fla. – Each year on the third Monday of January the United States observes Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.
Several events were held in the late Dr. Kings honor over the weekend in the Panhandle. Many took the time to acknowledge how essential Kings influence has been throughout the years.
The Martin Luther King Jr. Federal Holiday is a day that is designed to empower individuals, strengthen communities, bridge gaps, create solutions to social problems and bring us all closer to fulfilling Kings dream of the beloved community, Dr. Rufus L. Wood, Jr., Bay County NAACP , said.
According to National Today, the holiday was first observed on January 20, 1986. It was moved to being observed on the third Monday of January rather than Kings birthday. It follows the guidelines of the Uniform Monday Holiday Act.
The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.s time on Earth was limited to 39 years. The Civil Rights Movement 13 years. Oh, what a difference he made in the world. Dr. King used his time to bring about positive change in America and the world, Wood said.
Some would say King was a man of many talents, during his time alive he served as a preacher, an orator, a theologian, a scholar, an author a humanitarian, and even a civil rights activist. Kings influence has even inspired organizations.
Davis was one of several guest speakers to participate in a virtual zoom discussion honoring King while discussing the state of voting rights in America and election law.
How The Martin Luther King Jr Birthday Became A Holiday
The fight to make the Martin Luther King Jr. birthday a holiday took 32 years, a lot of campaigning, and guest appearances including Stevie Wonder, Ted Kennedy, and the National Football League.
Kings birthday was finally approved as a federal holiday in 1983, and all 50 states made it a state government holiday by 2000.
Officially, King was born on January 15, 1929 in Atlanta. But the King holiday is marked every year on the third Monday in January.
The King Center in Atlanta has a detailed chronology of how the efforts, starting shortly after Kings death in 1968, paid off in the long run. It wasnt an easy task for holiday supporters, who had to push hard in Congress to get the federal holiday created.
A second battle took place to get individual states to also recognize the holiday, with often emotional disagreements in two states.
Today, the King holiday serves multiple purposes: It honors the total legacy of King focuses on the issue of civil rights highlights the use of nonviolence to promote change and calls people into public service.
The struggle to get the holiday recognized reflects all these topics, along with some interesting twists and turns along the way.
Representative John Conyers introduced the first motion to make Kings birthday a federal holiday in 1968, just four days after Kings assassination in Memphis. It took another 11 years to the federal holiday to come up for a vote on the House of Representatives floor in 1979.
Don’t Miss: How To Plan A Birthday Party At Home For Adults
Southern Christian Leadership Conference
In 1957, King, Ralph Abernathy, Fred Shuttlesworth, Joseph Lowery, and other civil rights activists founded the Southern Christian Leadership Conference . The group was created to harness the moral authority and organizing power of black churches to conduct nonviolent protests in the service of civil rights reform. The group was inspired by the crusades of evangelist Billy Graham, who befriended King, as well as the national organizing of the group In Friendship, founded by King allies Stanley Levison and Ella Baker. King led the SCLC until his death. The SCLC’s 1957 Prayer Pilgrimage for Freedom was the first time King addressed a national audience. Other civil rights leaders involved in the SCLC with King included: James Bevel, Allen Johnson, Curtis W. Harris, Walter E. Fauntroy, C. T. Vivian, Andrew Young, The Freedom Singers, Cleveland Robinson, Randolph Blackwell, Annie Bell Robinson Devine, Charles Kenzie Steele, Alfred Daniel Williams King, Benjamin Hooks, Aaron Henry and Bayard Rustin.
The Common Society
King organized and led marches for blacks’ right to vote, desegregation, labor rights, and other basic civil rights. Most of these rights were successfully enacted into the law of the United States with the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the 1965 Voting Rights Act.
How Is Martin Luther King Jr Day Celebrated
, Day is usually celebrated with marches and parades and with speeches by civil rights leaders and politicians. Individuals and organizations also undertake volunteer efforts in support of what is often called the MLK Day of Service.
, in theUnited States, holiday honouring the achievements of A Baptist minister who advocated the use of nonviolent means to end racial segregation, he first came to national prominence during a bus boycott by African Americans in Montgomery, Alabama, in 1955. He founded the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in 1957 and led the 1963 . The most influential of African American civil rights leaders during the 1960s, he was instrumental in the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which outlawed discrimination in public accommodations, facilities, and employment, and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. King was awarded the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1964. He was assassinated on April 4, 1968.
Also Check: Birthday Places In Dallas For Adults
When Is Martin Luther King Jr Day
The third Monday in January is Martin Luther King Jr. Day . It has been a federal holiday since 1986. This means that it is an observed holiday for federal employees, as well as for many schools and businesses. This also means that the holiday does not always fall on Martin Luther King Jr.s true birth date, January 15.
This year, Martin Luther King Jr. Day will be observed on Monday, January 17, 2022.
Activism And Organizational Leadership
The Dexter Avenue Baptist Church, where King was called to be a minister in 1954, was influential in the Montgomery, Alabama, African-American community. As the church’s pastor, he became known for his oratorical preaching in Montgomery and the surrounding region.
In March 1955, Claudette Colvina fifteen-year-old black schoolgirl in Montgomeryrefused to give up her bus seat to a white man in violation of Jim Crow laws, local laws in the Southern United States that enforced racial segregation. King was on the committee from the Birmingham African-American community that looked into the case E. D. Nixon and Clifford Durr decided to wait for a better case to pursue because the incident involved a minor.
Nine months later on December 1, 1955, a similar incident occurred when Rosa Parks was arrested for refusing to give up her seat on a city bus. The two incidents led to the Montgomery bus boycott, which was urged and planned by Nixon and led by King. King was in his twenties, and had just taken up his clerical role. The other ministers asked him to take a leadership role simply because his relative newness to community leadership made it easier for him to speak out. King was hesitant about taking the role but decided to do so if no one else wanted it.
King’s role in the bus boycott transformed him into a national figure and the best-known spokesman of the civil rights movement.
Don’t Miss: General Birthday Cards In Bulk
Birthday Of Martin Luther King Jr 2025
Monday, January 20
Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is a federal holiday in the United States honoringthe achievements of Martin Luther King, Jr. – the chief spokesman for nonviolentactivism in the civil rights movement to end racial segregation.It is observed on the third Monday of January each year, whichis close to January 15, the King’s birthday.
Martin Luther King, Jr. was the most influential of African American civilrights leaders during the 1960s, he was instrumental in the passage of the CivilRights Act of 1964, which outlawed discrimination in public accommodations,facilities, and employment, and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. King was awardedthe Nobel Prize for Peace in 1964. He was assassinated on April 4, 1968.
The bill established the holiday was signed by the President Ronald Reagan onNovember 2, 1983. The first observance nationwide was in 1986, but some statesopposed to observed it as a paid holiday for state employees. As of the year2000 all of the states officially recognize the holiday.
Letter From Birmingham Jail
In 1960 King and his family moved to Atlanta, his native city, where he joined his father as co-pastor of the Ebenezer Baptist Church. This new position did not stop King and his SCLC colleagues from becoming key players in many of the most significant civil rights battles of the 1960s.
Their philosophy of nonviolence was put to a particularly severe test during the Birmingham campaign of 1963, in which activists used a boycott, sit-ins and marches to protest segregation, unfair hiring practices and other injustices in one of Americas most racially divided cities.
Arrested for his involvement on April 12, King penned the civil rights manifesto known as the Letter from Birmingham Jail, an eloquent defense of civil disobedience addressed to a group of white clergymen who had criticized his tactics.
Read Also: What To Do For Your 18th Birthday
It Is Important To Celebrate The Teachings Of Dr Martin Luther King Jr And Find Ways To Apply His Teachings Into Our Everyday Lives And The Lives Of Our Children Learn About This Special Holiday In January With Our Guide To Mlk Day
Martin Luther King Jr. Day honors the famous American civil rights leader who dedicated his life to achieving equality for people of all colors. Although few kids would question a day off from school, some may wonder why there is an entire day devoted to one man. Dr. King’s message of peace and justice touched many Americans. The national holiday that remembers him is a time to learn about history and reflect on some valuable messages that are still meaningful today.
Wondering how to start the conversation? Here are the facts on the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday and its cultural significance in terms simple enough for kids.
Becoming A State Holiday Took Longer
Recognition of the holiday at the state level in all 50 states took several years. New Hampshire was the last state to officially recognize the holiday in the state as “Martin Luther King, Jr Day” in 1999, previously calling it “Civil Rights Day”. Alabama and Mississippi Martin Luther King, Jr Day is celebrated alongside Robert E. Lees Birthday, who was born 19 January.
You May Like: Baby Boy 1st Birthday Party Ideas
Year Battle: The Fight For Mlk Day
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, also known as MLK Day, is celebrated every year in the United States on the third Monday in January to honor the achievements of the civil rights leader who advocated for nonviolent resistance against racial segregation.
It’s also the only federal holiday designated by Congress as a National Day of Service. Americans are encouraged to follow in Dr. King’s footsteps by participating in public service activities.
It’s a day on, not a day off, said Dr. Martin L. Boston, Assistant Professor in Pan African Studies and Ethnic Studies at California State University, Sacramento. There is no better term to say who Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was than a servant. So, MLK Day is a time to think about the most marginalized, most under-resourced, most undervalued people, and think of ways that you can service those people.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is, usually, celebrated nationwide with marches, parades, special ceremonies, and community service events. But it was a long battle to get MLK Day recognized as a national federal holiday.
Even though MLK Day represents an American hero, service, and unity among all, it took 15 years for the federal government to approve the holiday and an additional 17 years for it to be recognized in all 50 states.
2022 King Holiday Observance – Beloved Community Commemorative Service
The Martin Luther King, Jr. Center
What Do People Do On The Holiday
The commemoration is seen as a day to promote equal rights for all Americans, regardless of racial, gender, ethnic, religious, or other background.
In recent years, private organizations and federal legislation have encouraged Americans to volunteer their time on the day.
The day has become the most recognized day on the calendar for community service.
Don’t Miss: Happy Birthday Animated Gif With Music