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"Speeches"

Comments on John F. Kennedy by MLK at the Berlin Festival

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Dr. King gave this speech at the Berlin Freedom Festival in Berlin, West Germany, in memorial to the recently assassinated President John F. Kennedy. Dr. King reflects on the personality, achievements and enormous influence Kennedy had on the world. He highlights Kennedy's commitment to international human rights, which included recognition of Negro rights, and his leadership in concluding the atmospheric nuclear test ban treaty.

Sunday, September 13, 1964

Black Power - Dr. Vincent Harding

Dr. Harding gives a full detailed presentation on Black Power before the Southeastern Regional Advisory Board of the Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith.

MLK Public Statement on the Poor People's Campaign

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Dr. King announces several initiatives of the SCLC. He explains that due to severe displays of discrimination the SCLC and other organizations will continue the non-violent movement with a demonstration in Washington, D.C. Dr. King further paints the picture of inequality among the races by providing several illustrations of discrimination.

Monday, December 4, 1967

MLK's Statement to SCLC Describing SCOPE

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In this statement, Dr. King describes the Summer Community Organization and Political Education (SCOPE), an initiative of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. Its goals are to train local leaders, inform the public, and register individuals to vote.

Wednesday, June 16, 1965

Our Struggle

Dr. King drafts this speech entitled "Our Struggle" for the April 1956 publication of Liberation. Dr. King discusses how both whites and blacks have internalized a caste system that perpetuates Negroes as inferior beings. He speculates that racial peace is maintained in the caste system due to harsh discrimination and a loss of faith in the black community. Dr. King states that the shift in race relations, and subsequent tension, occurred when Negroes "began to re-evaluate themselves," finding self-respect and dignity.

President Kennedy's Stand on Negotiation in Albany

In this statement made from the Albany, Georgia city jail where he was imprisoned, Dr. King expresses appreciation for President Kennedy's support of negotiation between Albany's City Commission and civil rights leaders.

Jenner School Parents

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Presented here is a rough draft of an address delivered by Dr. King to the parents of Jenner Elementary school located in Chicago, Ill. Dr. King advises a plan to counteract deplorable school conditions as well as the misappropriation of tax dollars.

Wednesday, April 20, 1966

Introduction of Edward M. Kennedy

Dr. King introduces Robert Kennedy at a gathering in Jackson, Mississippi, calling him a "capable statesman" with a "great social vision."

New York Mayor Wagner Remarks at Reception

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New York Mayor Robert F. Wagner honors Dr. King at a reception following a ceremony where he was presented the Medallion of Honor of the City of New York after receiving the Nobel Peace Prize. The Mayor especially commends Dr. King for his courageous leadership in nonviolence and the spirit of love, goodwill, and peacemaking that he brings to the struggle for racial justice.

Thursday, December 17, 1964

MLK Speech at 4th Constitutional Convention - AFL-CIO

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This is an annotated copy of an address given by Dr. King at an AFL-CIO convention. Dr. King thoroughly discusses the working conditions of Negroes, and states the Negro unemployment rate is similar to "malignant cancer." He concludes that the two most dynamic forces in the country are the labor movement and the Negro Freedom Movement.

Monday, December 11, 1961

Three Dimensions of a Complete Life

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Dr. King states that the key to an extended and fulfilling life is to live a life that is "three dimensional." He further identifies these dimensions as: "length, breadth and height." Dr. King proclaims these dimensions will ensure a life of self-love, community and love for God.

Sunday, April 9, 1967

Herbert Hill Statement Before the House Committee on Education and Labor

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Herbert Hill, National Labor Director for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, addresses the House Committee on Education and Labor regarding the questionable practices conducted by the leadership of the International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union.

Friday, August 17, 1962

United Auto Workers Convention Speech

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Dr. King delivered this speech at the 1961 United Automobile Workers convention. He highlights the changes that have taken place in organized labor. He also connects the organized labor movement to equal opportunity in housing and the political process.

Monday, May 1, 1961

Press Statement by MLK About President Johnson's Address on Selma

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Dr. King lauds President Johnson's speech to a joint session of Congress, which he describes as an eloquent, unequivocal and passionate plea for human rights. This statement and the President's address occurred during the height of the Selma voting rights campaign.

Tuesday, March 16, 1965

The Future of Integration

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Dr. King discusses the various forms of segregation and the corresponding legislative acts that affect African Americans at the National Convention of the Fellowship of Reconciliation. King also provides details of how he hopes integration will take place.

Friday, August 21, 1959

SCLC Resolution on 1966 Civil Rights Act

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At its Tenth Annual Convention, the SCLC Board adopts a resolution calling upon President Johnson and Congress to reverse a vote on Title IV (Open Housing) of the Civil Rights Act of 1966 that effectively permits discrimination in the sale or rental of private housing. It also faults the Administration for failure to enforce Title VI (Ban on Federal Funds for Segregated Programs and Schools) of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and for inadequate appointment of voter examiners under the 1965 Voting Rights Act.

Thursday, August 11, 1966

Reverend Ralph D. Abernathy's Statement Following MLK's Assasination

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Rev. Abernathy acknowledges the deep pain and anger those in SCLC feel at the senseless taking of Dr. King’s life. They pledge that his work and commitment to nonviolence will continue. They are as much against violence, says Abernathy, as they are against racial and economic injustice. He announces that Mrs. King will join him in leading a march in Memphis in support of the sanitation workers and that the Poor People’s Campaign will proceed. He calls upon Congress to respond to the major loss represented by Dr.

Sunday, April 7, 1968

Statement Before The Credentials Committee

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Dr. King makes a statement to the Democratic National Committee in an effort to persuade the the organization to recognize the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party as a sitting, and voting, entity of the Democratic Party. Dr. King emphasizes that not only is the fabric of the Democratic National Party at stake, but representative government as it is known throughout the world.

Saturday, August 22, 1964

Address by MLK at the 30th Anniversary of District 65

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This document, an address given by Dr. King on the 30th anniversary of District 65, includes handwritten notes. In the address, Dr. King talks about the importance of the Declaration of Independence and the Emancipation Proclamation to human rights.

Wednesday, October 23, 1963

Tonight Show Appearance Press Release

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The SCLC announces that Dr. King will appear on the Tonight Show with Harry Belafonte filling in for Johnny Carson as host. Comedian Nipsey Russell and actor Paul Newman, both active in the civil rights movement, will also be guests. Dr. King looks forward to this opportunity to speak about the upcoming Poor People?s Campaign.

Wednesday, January 31, 1968

Nobel Peace Prize Lecture

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In this lecture delivered the day after he received the Nobel Peace Prize, Dr. King describes the major evils of the world as racial injustice, poverty and war. He presents a vision of a World House in which people learn to transcend differences in race, culture, ideas and religion and learn to live together in peace.

Friday, December 11, 1964

MLK's Public Statement Regarding Julian Bond

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Dr. King expresses his indignation for the State Legislatures refusal to seat Representative-Elect Julian Bond. Dr. King asserts that there are obvious racial overtones in the State Legislatures decisions since Mr. Bond received 82 percent of the votes in his district. Dr. King will commence direct action due to the state of urgency.

Tuesday, January 12, 1965

Ebenezer Church Bulletin and President Kennedy's Eulogy

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This is an Ebenezer Baptist Church bulletin expressing appreciation for the congregation's various acts of kindness toward one another. On the opposite side of the bulletin, an outline can be found for a memorial speech for the late President Kennedy.

Sunday, November 24, 1963

MLK Address to the Tenth Anniversary Convention of the SCLC

Dr. King, at the Tenth Anniversary Convention of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, addresses numerous civil rights issues the organization is addressing throughout America.

A Statement to the South and the Nation

The Southern Leaders Conference on Transportation and Non-Violent Integration issued this statement to the nation regarding the unresolved problems of civil rights. The leaders asked for all Negroes, particularly those in the South, to assert their human dignity and to seek justice by rejecting all injustices.

The Power of Nonviolence

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Dr. King delivers this address to the YMCA and YWCA in the Bay Area of California. The power of nonviolence is discussed being intertwined with the knowledge of agape, love and maladjustment. Agape can be defined as an understanding of the redemptive good will of all men. In relation to maladjustment, Dr. King explains how he never intended to adjust himself to segregation and discrimination. Dr. King expounds on how justice strengthened the Montgomery movement. He further explains how the powerful influence of love is a significant factor in the practice of nonviolence.

Thursday, May 1, 1958

People to People: A Choice and a Promise

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Dr. King addresses the idea that American people of all races have a choice to make this nation a great society.

Saturday, November 21, 1964

MLK on the Republican Nomination of Barry Goldwater

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Dr. King issued this statement regarding the "unfortunate and disastrous" Republican Party's nomination of Senator Barry Goldwater for the Presidency of the United States. The Reverend expounds on his disapproval of the nomination by stating that he represents an unrealistic conservation that is totally out of touch with the realities of the twentieth century.

Thursday, July 16, 1964

A Look To The Future

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For the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Highlander Folk School, Dr. King delivers the speech "A Look To The Future." He uses a timeline to explain the adversities African Americans endured to gain recognition as American citizens. He also points out the efforts of the Ku Klux Klan and the White Citizens Councils to make African Americans second class citizens. Lastly, Dr. King points out that America should be more maladjusted in order to avoid failing to cope with the demands of the normal social environment.

Monday, September 2, 1957

Transcript of Press Conference on Hotel Restaurant Desegregation

Dr. King states in this 1962 press conference that he sees integration of Atlanta hotels and restaurants as imminent. With the exception of Mississippi, Alabama, and South Carolina, civil rights are progressing throughout the South. The many groups working on the issue are working toward a common goal and using a variety of strategies, including direct action, litigation, legislation, and education.

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