I Have a DreamApril 04, 2008
What powerful images the words “I have a dream” bring to mind as the nation honors the legacy of the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., on the 40th anniversary of his assassination. I found my emotions immediately surfacing as I listened to his speech. How far we have come since then, how far we still need to go. Read 40 Years Later: The Unrealized American Dream, a new report on the inequalities that African Americans still face, for a compelling perspective on the work that remains to be done.
Each of us has our own dreams, our own sense of injustices that need to be overcome. I unfortunately had the opportunity of listening to someone on the Metro the other day making it very clear they would never vote for a “broad,” let alone one of “them.” I turned my head and saw only a sea of professional commuters and a handful of tourists, all suddenly hushed. The good news: A chorus of voices immediately rose, talking of how terrible bigotry is and of the responsibility of freedom.
Women have also achieved success in overcoming equity obstacles; AAUW’s own history reflects this. Our paths crossed with another King in 1969, when the AAUW Educational Foundation launched the Coretta Scott King Fund, providing opportunities for black women to study African American history and culture, social change, and peace.
Our dream of equality has yet to be fully realized either. Civil Rights, Economic Security, Education – all issues AAUW focuses their advocacy efforts around. The great thing about dreams is their potential to motivate. Our community has a great dream and a collective voice. Have you raised yours lately?