In search of Freedom
“We still have a long, long way to go before we reach the promised land of freedom.” Dr. Martin Luther King proclaimed in his book entitled Where Do We Go From Here? Chaos or Community (1967). At the time Jim Crowe Laws had been dismantled, but people were still holding on to tradition and racist beliefs. In 1965 major civil rights legislation had passed, but that did not mean that people had made all the necessary changes that needed to be made for all to enjoy equal rights. The Watts riots had just happened in 1965 and the Black Panther movement was taking African Americans in a different direction than that of Dr. King. Anti-Vietnam War protests were occurring, and other fights for freedom were arising. Dr. King made this profound statement in an attempt to frame what lie ahead and what still needed to be done in order to gain more freedom. At a young age, we are presented with the abstract notion of freedom. Yet, freedom seems elusive and challenging to obtain. Yet, today, we enjoy freedoms that at one point in history seemed impossible and today they are a reality. Our United States Nation was founded on principles of freedom. People came to the United States to escape religious persecution and a rigid social class system. Our very own Declaration of Independence states that “all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” Dr. King’s words and actions among those of all other Civil Rights Leaders have made it possible for a Chinese young man like me to enjoy rights and liberties that many before me did not have and died to obtain. And although there is still work to be done in the area of equality, we have come a long way when it comes to obtaining freedom. Today, people of color and women can vote, can join the military and defend our country, and all children representing all ethnic and cultural backgrounds can be in the...
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