By: Lanetra Bennett
August 28, 2013
Tallahassee, FL - FAMU administrators and community leaders challenge the community to be "keepers of the dream."
Fifty years ago on this day, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. stood on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C. and delivered his, "I Have a Dream" speech.
Wednesday, FAMU Professor Dr. James Moran stood on the balcony of Lee Hall at FAMU and recited that famous speech.
While only about 100 people attended FAMU's ceremony to commemorate the 50th anniversary of King's speech, Dr. Moran's recitation could be heard booming throughout the entire college campus.
Local elected officials and community leaders reflected on the works of those fighting for justice during the civil rights era.
Leon County Commissioner Bill Proctor says, "We're all here trying to commemorate the many days there were dogs, and some days there was rain, and other days there were batons from police that was brutality."
Some leaders challenged today's society to not only remember Dr. King's dream of equality for all, but, to also take part in continuing the efforts.
Tallahassee City Commissioner Andrew Gillum "What will our dream be for this generation? I will submit that even though we don't have to stand on the front lines with dogs and water hoses, that even today we still have a struggle to overcome."
The ceremony ended with Dr. Moran's resounding voice saying Dr. King's powerful words, "Free at last, free at last, thank God almighty, we're free at last."
Press Release: FAMU
Florida A&M University (FAMU) will host two events on campus August 27-28th to commemorate the March on Washington and the Civil Rights Movement. "Breaking the Line," a forum on how black athletes played a pivotal role during the Civil Rights Movement, is scheduled Tuesday, August 27th at 6:30 p.m. in Lee Hall Auditorium.
FAMU will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the historic March on Washington with a commemorative ceremony titled, "Keepers of the Dream" on Wednesday, August 28th at 10 a.m. in the FAMU Quadrangle.
"FAMU joins individuals and institutions around the globe to pause and reflect on the Civil Rights Movement and its tremendous impacts," said FAMU Interim President Larry Robinson. "As a university that has a rich history in social activism. it is important to honor those brave men and women who were on the front line in the struggle for justice. There is still much work to do, but much of what we enjoy today would not be possible without the efforts of many over the years."
Author Samuel G. Freedman wrote the book, "Breaking the Line" which brings to life the historic saga of the battle for the 1967 black college football championship between head coaches Jake Gaither of Florida A&M and Eddie Robinson of Grambling. Both teams boasted two of the best quarterbacks to ever play the game: Ken Riley and James Harris.
Freedman will moderate a conversation on the historic impact of the game and the determination of the athletes and coaches involved. Panelists will include Eddie Jackson, former FAMU sports information officer and author of "Coaching Against the Winds;" Ken Riley, former FAMU quarterback; and Bobby Lang, former track coach.
A book signing will take place in the lobby immediately following forum.
The "Keepers of the Dream" ceremony will feature a performance by the FAMU Choir and remarks from local and elected leaders including. Both events are free and open to the public. For more information, call 850-599-3413.