MLK Day & Favorite MLK Quotes

MLK Day & Favorite MLK Quotes

Martin Luther King Day is a federal holiday held on the third Monday of January. It celebrates the life and achievements of Martin Luther King Jr., an influential American civil rights leader. He is most well-known for his campaigns to end racial segregation on public transport and for racial equality in the United States.

Martin Luther King Day is a relatively new federal holiday and there are few long standing traditions. It is seen as a day to promote equal rights for all Americans, regardless of their background. Some educational establishments mark the day by teaching their pupils or students about the work of Martin Luther King and the struggle against racial segregation and racism. In recent years, federal legislation has encouraged Americans to give some of their time on this day as volunteers in citizen action groups.

Martin Luther King was an important civil rights activist. He was a leader in the movement to end racial segregation in the United States. His most famous address was the “I Have A Dream” speech. He was an advocate of non-violent protest and became the youngest man to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. He was assassinated in 1968.

In 1968, shortly after Martin Luther King died, a campaign was started for his birthday to become a holiday to honor him. After the first bill was introduced, trade unions lead the campaign for the federal holiday. It was endorsed in 1976. Following support from the musician Stevie Wonder with his single “Happy Birthday” and a petition with six million signatures, the bill became law in 1983. Martin Luther King Day was first observed in 1986, although it was not observed in all states until the year 2000.


  • Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that. – MLK, Jr.
  • The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.- MLK, Jr.
  • Change does not roll in on the wheels on inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. And so we must straighten our backs and work for our freedom. A man can’t ride you unless your back is bent.- MLK, Jr.
  • In the End, we remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friend. MLK, Jr.
  • He who passively accepts evil is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetrate it. He who accepts evil without protesting against it is really cooperating with it. MLK, Jr.
  • Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.- MLK, Jr.
  • We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.- MLK, Jr.
  • Almost always, the creative dedicated minority has made the world better. MLK, Jr.
  • Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.- MLK, Jr.
  • The time is always right to do what is right. MLK, Jr.
  • A right delayed is a right denied. MLK, Jr.
  • We may have all come on different ships, but we’re in the same boat now.- MLK, Jr.
  • it may be true that the law cannot make a man love me, but it can keep him from lynching me, and I think that’s pretty important.- MLK, Jr. 
  • When you are right you cannot be to radical; when you are wrong, you cannot be too conservative.- MLK, Jr. 
  • The moral arc of the universe bends at the elbow of justice.- MLK, Jr. 
  • We must use time creatively.- MLK, Jr. 

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