It was only a little over seventeen minutes in length but it is said to be the most remembered and the most memorized speech in American History.
Fifty years ago, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. addressed a crowd of 250,000 people gathered in Washington, DC. He called on the people of the various states, and the government of these united States to live up to the principles espoused in the Declaration of Independence.
But it was not, as many have falsely claimed, a call for “civil” rights. In fact, in my view, Dr. King was not a champion of “civil” rights. He was a champion of God-given rights.
Dr. King made clear in his famous address that the liberty and equality before the law that he was demanding did NOT originate in human government. The right to equality before the law is not a “civil” right. It is a right ordained by God and therefore a right that civil government has a duty to protect and defend.
Dr. King quoted from the Old Testament Books of Amos and Isaiah. He also made subtle references to Psalm 30 and the New Testament Book of Galatians. When he said that he hoped his children would be judged not by the “color of their skin but by the content of their character” he was applying God’s fixed, eternal standard – not a malleable man-made one.
Unlike many modern day welfare state proponents, Dr. King’s demands were right because they were based on a righteous pretense.
In both private and public policy, we must remember that God created only one race – the human race. Therefore, all elevation or denigration of individuals or groups based on skin color is immoral and shameful because it violates the Law of Nature and of Nature’s God.
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