A palpable sense of respect and presence shaped the tone of the crowd at the Mall here in Washington in commemoration of Dr. King’s Dream speech 50 years ago today. President Obama’s point that “Change doesn’t come from Washington, change comes to Washington” reflected the visual collage of diverse faces focused on remembering to go forward. Giving voice to social justice at the grass roots of thinking and action has made a difference. Without it, no progress would have been possible.
In commentary, NPR’s Linda Wertheimer reminisced to her presence at the event 50 years ago and not remembering the speeches as much as the feeling of the crowd. I recall watching it on TV and would make the same parallels today. Movements are inspired by people on podiums and made by the people standing shoulder to shoulder with a dream.