By Kenneth Simmons
*Rev. Boyer's message begins at 35:00*
PISCATAWAY, NJ – On Monday, January 16th, the nation will take time to commemorate the life and legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with the federal holiday honoring him. As we celebrate the civil rights leader’s January 15th birthday, it’s important to reflect on his impact on civil rights in America and the civil rights movement of the 1960s.
King's legacy lives on in the civil rights movement of the 1960s and beyond, and is remembered every year with special commemorations and events.
In Piscataway, Civil Rights Advisory Commission hosted the township’s annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemorative Breakfast on Saturday at the Senior Center. Speaking on the theme “Together We Stand”, this year’s featured guest speaker was Rev. Dr. Charles F. Boyer, pastor of Greater Mount Zion AME Church in Trenton and founder of Salvation and Social Justice Movement.
For those who weren’t able to attend, the event will air on Piscataway Community Television on Monday, January 16th at 9:00 a.m., 1:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. on Optimum Channel 15 and Verizon Fios Channel 40.
Dr. King was born on January 15, 1929 in Atlanta, Georgia to Reverend and Mrs. Martin Luther King, Sr. His birth, though humble, was also prophetic as Dr. King grew up to become one of the most influential leaders of the civil rights movement of the 1960s. Dr. King was a pastor, civil rights activist, and orator who championed nonviolent civil disobedience as a means of achieving racial equality. He spoke out against the systemic racism throughout the country, giving speeches and leading marches in order to bring attention to the issue of civil rights.
Dr. King was the leader of the Montgomery Bus Boycott in 1955 and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in 1957, both of which helped spark the civil rights movement of the 1960s. He also gave his famous “I Have a Dream” speech at the March on Washington in 1963, encouraging millions of Americans to come together to fight for racial equality. The legacy of Dr. King’s work is still very much alive today. He was instrumental in the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which outlawed discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. He also helped in the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which outlawed discriminatory voting practices.
On this day, we honor and remember the life and legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. His message of peace, justice, and equality still resonates strongly today. We owe a debt of gratitude to Dr. King for his commitment to civil rights and for his willingness to risk his life to make the world a better place.
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