The Martin Luther King holiday often features stills and videos of Dr. King delivering his “I Have a Dream” during the March on Washington in 1963. And it is a brilliant speech.
But it is not his only brilliant speech. Dr. King, of course, delivered many more.
Since Norway has been in the news in the United States and around the world lately, (and January 15 is Dr. King’s actual birthday) today is the perfect day to present Dr. King’s Nobel acceptance speech and lecture.
In both the acceptance speech and lecture, he both indicts an unjust society while remaining boldly optimistic that it can change. It is quite the balancing act.
It is a balancing act that we are still trying to achieve: overcoming our “moral and spiritual lag” by choosing and embracing love.
(Recipients of the Nobel Peace Prize are selected by the Norwegian Nobel Committee. The committee members are appointed by the Norwegian Parliament. Dr. King was the youngest recipient of the award at the time.)
A few excerpts. First, from his acceptance speech: