You’ll also want to check out Martin Luther King’s Wikipedia entry and Martin Luther King’s birthday at the Library of Congress.
Here is an excerpt from the text of Dr. Martin Luther King’s December 18, 1963 address at Western Michigan University:
The world in which we live is geographically one. Now we are challenged to make it one in terms of brotherhood. Now it is true that the geographical oneness of this age has come into being to a large extent through man’s scientific ingenuity. Man through his scientific genius has been able to dwarf distance and place, time and change. Our jet planes have compressed minutes into distances that once took months and weeks and days. I think Bob Hope has adequately described this new jet age in which we live. He said “It is an age in which it is possible to take a non-stop flight from Los Angeles, California to New York city–a distance of some three thousand miles–and if on taking off in Los Angeles you develop hiccups, you will ‘hic’ in Los Angeles and ‘cup’ in New York City.” You know it is possible because time difference to take a non-stop flight from Tokyo, Japan on Sunday morning and arrive in Seattle, Washington on the preceding Saturday night and when your friends meet you at the airport and ask when you left Tokyo, you will have to say, I left tomorrow.
Now this is a bit humorous but I’m trying to laugh a basic fact into all of us. It is simply this, that through our scientific genius, we have made of this world a neighborhood. Now through our ethical and moral commitment, we must make of it a brotherhood. We must all learn to live together as brothers or we will perish together as fools. This is the great challenge of the hour. This is true of individuals. It is true of nations. No individual can live alone. No nation can live alone.
…or state. We have a lot of work before us, and I hope that Michigan can be an active and engaged part of reshaping our naton and world for a changed future. I think that everyone might need to watch this speech every so often. When I hear it, I think about people who are still battling discrimination through race of course, but also through where they happen to live and who they choose to love. It’s always the time to make real the promises of Democracy.