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What Does Martin Luther King Jr. Day Mean to You?

Is it a day to celebrate, a day to give back or the last day of a long weekend?

Monday, Jan. 21, is Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

For some, it is a day to honor the prominent civil rights activist by giving back to the community, like these opportunities chronicled in Athens Patch and Oconee Patch.

For others, it is a day of celebration, a way to celebrate the unity in the community, like the second annual

And for others, it is the final day on a long weekend and an opportunity for a day off work.

So which is it for you? A day to give back, a day to celebrate or the last day of a vacation weekend?

A little history, courtesy of Wheaton Patch

Martin Luther King Jr. Day, now a U.S. holiday, took 15 years to create. Legislation was first proposed by Congressman John Conyers (D-Michigan) four days after King was assassinated in 1968.

The bill was stalled, but Conyers, along with Rep. Shirley Chisholm (D-New York), pushed for the holiday every legislative session until it was finally passed in 1983, following civil rights marches in Washington. 

Then-president Ronald Reagan signed it into law. Yet it was not until 2000 that every U.S. state celebrated Martin Luther King Jr. Day by its name. Before then, states like Utah referred to the holiday more broadly as Human Rights Day. 

Now, the Corporation for National and Community Service has declared it an official U.S. Day of Service.

David Brown January 19, 2013 at 08:20 PM
Tammy, a definitive passage on God's perspective is Matthew 25:31-46. There Jesus made it clear that we will be judged according to how we treat the poor and the stranger (immigrant). You're right that those verses are speaking to Christians.
thcooper69 January 20, 2013 at 03:01 PM
what it means to me is a day of no shananigans on da freeways ,city skreets ect . when u travel to work on this day and back home u finnaly realize ,WHO is causin all tha real problems . some things u mis on this day is when u come up to an intersection someone who is sittin in tha left hand turn lane with there blinker on to turn left is now wanting to go to tha right as THAY do this causing accidents and slowing down traffiks . u wont be seeing any u turns across 9 lanes of traffiks ,involvin all us normal drivers who go to an intersection an use an turn signal . the fas lane is wide open to use as intended ,theres KNOWONE in it on there cellphone driving 20 under tha speed limit impeding the flow of traffiks ccausing conjestion . when u come up to any 1st theree exits off any freeway leading outside of 285 u wont see any drivers in tha fas lane 20 yards prior to exits try to merge across 10 lanes jus to get to there exits causing accidents imepDing tha flow of traffiks and cloggin up da freeways ,like when a tiolet backs up !.yes indeedy i enjoy my mlk days and relish themb ! traffiks drives in at tha normal speed of 120 on I-20 ,JUS LIKE THA RAPPER LUDA SINGS MOVE B, {this is a rap tune about drivin on I-20} .
Tammy Osier January 21, 2013 at 12:02 AM
Coop got into the moonshine again...
Good Grief Y'all January 21, 2013 at 04:09 PM
I heard a great sermon yesterday on the civil rights movement and Dr. MLK,Jr. My minister grew up in the 50s and 60s during segregation. He said many believe we should be color blind, seek to come to the point where we don't see skin color, that that is the destination of the struggle for human rights for all. And, yet, he disagrees somewhat, saying we should celebrate the differences God created, see and appreciate them, not look past them, not blur them into one generic melting pot of humanity.
r patton March 25, 2013 at 03:49 PM
As I do admire Dr. King and his approach to change. Most of the people under the age of 40 have no idea how tough Dr. King had it trying to make it better, not for himself but for everyone. It is sad to say, most of the 40 and under (I said MOST), have no idea what is going on with the good things and advancements Dr. King made and they don't see it as they are caught up in their daily lives and THAT is what they care about. And before you start yelling "How do you know", I have seen Dr. King, in person, and listened to what he had to say and supported his ideas and values. Oh, one other item for you non-beleivers, I am white.

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