Remembering the 1963 March On Washington

by Mackenzie Stasko on August 28, 2013 at 6:40 am

Wednesday was the anniversary of the both famous and influential, "I have a Dream" speech by civil rights leader, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Zanesville pastor, Clifton Kilpatrick was only 4-years-old when King delivered his speech, but says he remembers how that day and the years to follow, changed his community.

"I was living in Meridian, Mississippi; my hometown. So down south, the deep south, that was a high point in my community," said Kilpatrick. "Because at that particular time, people were actually experiencing Jim Crow Laws and major segregation and racial bias. And it was really a time where that whole event gave people hope."

Kilpatrick says King’s speech gave him and others in the south, hope, that things would start to change. Today, he believes progress has been made, but more needs to be done.

"We need to reprise that event and resonate in today’s time because the battle lines are a little different, but the war is the same. And so, we are in danger of allowing history to repeat itself."

In honor of the 50th anniversary, Governor John Kasich declared Wednesday the, "Let Freedom Ring Day" in Ohio and called the 1963 speech a "pivotal contribution" for racial equality.