Saturday, August 28, 2010

"I Have a Dream"

We, Cambodians, should not forget the patience, activism and courage of black America. President Barack Obama did not arise out of a vacuum but rode on the shoulders of giants who went before him. Let us Cambodians be "giants" for our children and children's children in the building of a better Cambodia. On the anniversary of this inspirational speech of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., I Have a Dream, let us be reminded that history is not made by born-heroes but by ordinary individuals like Dr. King who did not shy away from extraordinary times and circumstances. -
"I Have a Dream"

Martin Luther King, Jr.
delivered 28 August 1963, at the Lincoln Memorial, Washington D.C.

I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation.

Five score years ago, a great American, in whose symbolic shadow we stand today, signed the Emancipation Proclamation. This momentous decree came as a great beacon light of hope to millions of Negro slaves who had been seared in the flames of withering injustice. It came as a joyous daybreak to end the long night of their captivity.

But one hundred years later, the Negro still is not free. One hundred years later, the life of the Negro is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination. One hundred years later, the Negro lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity. One hundred years later, the Negro is still languished in the corners of American society and finds himself an exile in his own land. And so we've come here today to dramatize a shameful condition.

In a sense we've come to our nation's capital to cash a check. When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir. This note was a promise that all men, yes, black men as well as white men, would be guaranteed the "unalienable Rights" of "Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness." It is obvious today that America has defaulted on this promissory note, insofar as her citizens of color are concerned. Instead of honoring this sacred obligation, America has given the Negro people a bad check, a check which has come back marked "insufficient funds."

But we refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of this nation. And so, we've come to cash this check, a check that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and the security of justice.

We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of Now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is the time to make real the promises of democracy. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to lift our nation from the quicksands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood. Now is the time to make justice a reality for all of God's children.

It would be fatal for the nation to overlook the urgency of the moment. This sweltering summer of the Negro's legitimate discontent will not pass until there is an invigorating autumn of freedom and equality. Nineteen sixty-three is not an end, but a beginning. And those who hope that the Negro needed to blow off steam and will now be content will have a rude awakening if the nation returns to business as usual. And there will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until the Negro is granted his citizenship rights. The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright day of justice emerges.

But there is something that I must say to my people, who stand on the warm threshold which leads into the palace of justice: In the process of gaining our rightful place, we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred. We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. We must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again, we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force.

The marvelous new militancy which has engulfed the Negro community must not lead us to a distrust of all white people, for many of our white brothers, as evidenced by their presence here today, have come to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny. And they have come to realize that their freedom is inextricably bound to our freedom.

We cannot walk alone.

And as we walk, we must make the pledge that we shall always march ahead.

We cannot turn back.

There are those who are asking the devotees of civil rights, "When will you be satisfied?" We can never be satisfied as long as the Negro is the victim of the unspeakable horrors of police brutality. We can never be satisfied as long as our bodies, heavy with the fatigue of travel, cannot gain lodging in the motels of the highways and the hotels of the cities. We cannot be satisfied as long as the negro's basic mobility is from a smaller ghetto to a larger one. We can never be satisfied as long as our children are stripped of their self-hood and robbed of their dignity by signs stating: "For Whites Only." We cannot be satisfied as long as a Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and a Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote. No, no, we are not satisfied, and we will not be satisfied until "justice rolls down like waters, and righteousness like a mighty stream."¹

I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of great trials and tribulations. Some of you have come fresh from narrow jail cells. And some of you have come from areas where your quest -- quest for freedom left you battered by the storms of persecution and staggered by the winds of police brutality. You have been the veterans of creative suffering. Continue to work with the faith that unearned suffering is redemptive. Go back to Mississippi, go back to Alabama, go back to South Carolina, go back to Georgia, go back to Louisiana, go back to the slums and ghettos of our northern cities, knowing that somehow this situation can and will be changed.

Let us not wallow in the valley of despair, I say to you today, my friends.

And so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal."

I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia, the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.

I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

I have a dream today!

I have a dream that one day, down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of "interposition" and "nullification" -- one day right there in Alabama little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.

I have a dream today!

I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, and every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight; "and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed and all flesh shall see it together."2

This is our hope, and this is the faith that I go back to the South with.

With this faith, we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith, we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith, we will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day.

And this will be the day -- this will be the day when all of God's children will be able to sing with new meaning:
  • My country 'tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing.
  • Land where my fathers died, land of the Pilgrim's pride,
  • From every mountainside, let freedom ring!
And if America is to be a great nation, this must become true.

And so let freedom ring from the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire.
  • Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York.
  • Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsylvania.
  • Let freedom ring from the snow-capped Rockies of Colorado.
  • Let freedom ring from the curvaceous slopes of California.
But not only that:
  • Let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia.
  • Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Tennessee.
  • Let freedom ring from every hill and molehill of Mississippi.
  • From every mountainside, let freedom ring.
And when this happens, when we allow freedom ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God's children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual:

Free at last! Free at last!

Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!


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Anonymous said...

KI Media Team,

Congratulations on having decided finally to remove any inappropriate comments from your site!

This will conform very nicely and nobly with the saying "Your freedom ends where my nose begins".

Anet Khmer

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful and powerful speech of Dr. King!

It is indeed quite motivational and encouraging for freedom lovers to fight for their God-given freedom.

Keep on doing the good work you are doing here, Theary and thank you very much for all of your hard work in Cambodia, our beloved and beautiful country.

Anet Khmer

Anonymous said...

It was truly a historical day in America. Dr. King's message and his dream has brought about changes for the betterment of all mandkind, not just America.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Dr. King, you were not only fight for black freedom, but freedom for all mankind.

Anonymous said...

I'd like to command the recent action taken by KI-team to remove trashes from its public comment section. Trashes belong in the trash. Great decision, and a fanstatic job, KI.

Anonymous said...

i don't know if it was a trash or because his/her opinions are different from yours and you don't like it.

I have a dream that coming very soon, Si Hanourouk will die!

Anonymous said...

Mr. Heng Soy and KI media. Thanks for posting Dr. King speech. He is very inspiring. The core of his movement for freedom and equality is base on none violent and love. If you have a trace of hatred and violent, even in your heart, you do not follow Doctor King none violent method. If anyone of use wishing former king Sihanouk or HS to die, or if we have any small hatred in our heart toward them, we are not follow Dr. King none violent method.

Anonymous said...

It will be a sure thing that Sihanouk will die, and probably die sooner. His stenching corp better not burry in your Cambodia because your Khmer people will take turn to pee on it!

Whatever your non-violent method or strategies that you peace-lover mongers have been using had not been working. Yuons are in your Cambodia, Siams are threatening to take a piece of your treasure, and your scumbage current leader and his minions are continuing to sucking your khmer people's blood. Go ahead, have a dream! Khmer people go to sleep and wish that they can dream about numbers so that they can play lottery!

Non-violent movement can and will only work in the Democratic Countries - because these countries have already had their Constitutions and Judicial System as their foundation.

In your country, Cambodia, the constitution was written by them and for them, IN THE SAND!

KhmerIsrael said...

"All are God's children" but not all acknowledge Creator, God, as their Father!
Any true justice in the world is only temporal, unless all acknowledge the true and living God.
Because people have another father call the, Devil.

Margret Sanger, plan parenthood founder was a racist. Abortionists target the blacks and hispanic communities to rid off inferior races.

Germans think they have the superiority above other race known as Aryan. Their father is the devil because they see Jews as scumbs of the earth. Killing Jews was the right thing to do. Now, its the Muslims hating Jews to the very core of inmost being.

Why? because Jews are reminder of a covenant keeping God. If God was not a covenant keeping God, Israel would not exist today! Because this is whom Satan target most.

Anonymous said...

and you above, you think you are on higher ground with your christian belief than others with different religions. what a bucket load of crap!

Anonymous said...

thank you, 8:42 AM!

Anonymous said...

Believe it or not, God is your God too. It is not about religion, but about acknowledge our Creator God and follow his instruction to share love and compassion to all humanity.

Anonymous said...

I have a dream that someday, all Asian will realize that they have deep root with Prasat Angkor and it will be the Mecca of the East.

Ordinary Khmer

Anonymous said...

Angkor Wat has always been the mecca of the East, in the heart of Cambodia. So your dreams come true for sure.
Dr. King speech had only one purpose; that is to attain freedom for African racism in America in 1960s. If you think of the spiritual unity amongst black people during the time that this speech was made to the public you will see that the rally of black american was the strength behind this speech. Racism is still an issue plaguing the American society and other parts of the world.

Anonymous said...

Thank you 10:30pm, but 2 millions visitors a years visiting Prasat Angkor is not enough :) It's the world heritage site today and having just many people coming and see it?

Also many American indeed were trying really hard to be truthful by voting and getting Mr. Barrak Obama into the office of Presidency. It's very positive that American accept and recognize the contribution from other races. Dr. Martin's speech certainly opens the eyes and ears of everyone. We can thank that to KI and Ms. Theary for bringing the same concept to Cambodia . They are trying to take the Cambodian people to the next level and to the threshold of freedom and liberty from the current situation in Cambodia indeed. It's entirely opt to us to step inside or not.


Anonymous said...

Yep. One can take the horse to the water, but it's opt to them to drink it.

Anonymous said...

11:31 PM,

I could not have agreed with you more!

KhmerIsrael said...

8:42 AM, Everyone in the world are fed by the Mighty God of Israel. No exception!

So yes, belief in the God of Israel is the only real God. Because God's first commandment to all who believe in him is: "Thou shall have no other gods before me"... Why? because there is no others beside him. All other religions in the world are conjure up by the thoughts and beliefs of men who sought after spiritual quest. But the greatest err of all is that they been taken captives by Satan, who is the god of this world.

Israel will be the capital of the world. And Jerusalem will be the worship center for all peoples.

As Mr. Martin Luther King fought for the blacks freedom, I'm fighting for the nations to turn toward the God of Israel. Especially Cambodia. Believe me, God cares of what's been happening in Cambodia, it just that the majority of the people have not sought his face to receive help from him. Therefore God can do so much as the people are willing to allow him.

The earth is God's footstool and he rules over the nations.

He has chosen the Jews for specific purpose, mainly to manifest himself to the world through them, (those who follow him).

No, he is not only the God of Israel, but he is the God of all flesh (nations). Just that majority of nations had turn away from him and established their own gods that are not of him. As the result of that they suffered from their wrong choice.

The bible says that I'm living in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation. Another way of saying in the midst of crooked and perverse generation.

God says that this world is perverse. Its very obvious. Jesus name is very popular cursing and swearing name in the world.

Wow, I never heard Buddha's name or Allah's name being used as a curse word. Why only Jesus/God's name? It must be real or otherwise it wouldn't be worth their breath to utter the Mighty name of God.

Anonymous said...

1:12 AM,

Oh come on Mr. 1:12 AM, you can't lower your Jesus whom you believe to be a true God to the point of arguing that he is a real God because people curse in his name.

You can also pull it the other way by saying that perhaps they hate your Jesus more than Buddha and Allah or that the people who believe in Buddha and Allah come from societies with more discipline and respect towards God than your western society.

The God of Israel is your God and not mine!

Tell me why your God of Israel, if he is a true God for everyone, only blesses the white race!

For me, God does not exist so don't preach your message to me. I don't mind going whereever after death. Just look at the KR killing fields and you realize that your God of Israel was not there for the Cambodians when the killing took place. Could it be that he only exists in your mind and your bible?

Anonymous said...

1:12am, you are a typical brain washed cambodian christian stuffed with off the wall fanatical rambling. you can not reason on anything beyond your imaginary god. it is safe to say that you are a fanatic to the point that you can join the other fanatics that you so seek to condem. you try to overwhelme others with your madness garbage. in all you typify a deranged individual with terroristic religeous mumbo jumbo bombardment.

Anonymous said...

Way back in 1967, at the time of the American War in Indochina, Rev. Martin Luther King famously said:

“The greatest purveyor of violence in the world today is my own government.”

He was correct at the time, and his words are just as true today.

Anonymous said...

I just don't know why some stupid Cambodian people continue to confuse the Black American dream and the Cambodian dream(nightmare) called the Killing Field!

There is no comparison between Black American experience and Cambodian experience! Here is why!
The Black American dream dealt with civil right and racial prejudice! But the Cambodian dream dealt with the World Super Powers and the push and pull of the Communists between the non-Communist and the start of the Cold War and Cambodia was used as a pawn and as result million and million of Cambodian people died fighting and starving through communist social engineering and then more wars to come!

I believe Cambodia people need to stop living in somebody else dream and start living in their own dream and only then they will find the true meaning of life and what does it means to be human!

Please stop posting more of Martin Luther King's dream because it doesn't make any sense to people like me who been through the nightmare the killing field!

Anonymous said...

got to say, I can't say any better than 2:38pm has said.

Anonymous said...

Yep, thank you 2:38 PM!!!!

Anonymous said...

Don't you have any dream dummy 2:38pm? If you can not dream, you can not do it man. Take it easy