This post first appeared at OnMilwaukee.com a number of years ago. We run it again today in honor of the anniversary of Dr. King's appearance at the Milwaukee Auditorium.
In his lifetime, Dr. Martin Luther King was known for his splendid oratorical abilities and, especially, his remarkable landmark speeches about racism, segregation, equality and other issues key issues of the civil rights movement. His words have become etched into the American psyche.
Dr. King spoke in Milwaukee on a couple occasions. His first speech here was delivered on Aug. 14, 1956.
He returned on Jan. 27, 1964 â€“51 years ago today â€“ for a standing-room-only event at the Milwaukee Auditorium (now the Milwaukee Theatre). According to newspaper reports, at the Auditorium Dr. King spoke to 6,300 Milwaukeeans for about 40 minutes after holding a press conference upon his arrival at Mitchell Field.
Here are some of the highlights:
He encouraged people to erase two myths: "Only time can solve the problems of racial integration" and "Civil rights legislation is not important."
"It may be true that you cannot legislate morality but behavior can be regulated."
"Law cannot change the heart, but it can restrain the heartless. ... Law cannot make a man love me but it can keep him from lynching me."
"Time is neutral. It can be used either constructively or destructively ... We must help time and we must realize that the time is always right to do right."
"We have argued and discussed civil rights enough." He cautioned against getting "bogged down in the paralysis of analysis. ... This problem will not work itself out. Somebody must be dedicated. Somebody must be willing to stand up. There is a need for a sort of divine discontent."
"It takes a strong person to be nonviolent. It has a way of disarming the opposition. He doesn't know what to do. He doesn't know how to handle it."
"We will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair the stone of hope."
It is a…Read more...