Freedom will Ring with Love!
Dr. King is probably, to my recall, the only Christian Pastor that is honored with a National Holiday in the United States, and in the shadow of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, on August 28th, 1963, he reminded his audience of the Emancipation Proclamation of Lincoln.
“But he also said, “But one hundred years later, we must face the tragic fact that the Negro (sic)is still 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 languishing in the corners of American society and finds himself an exile in his own land. So we have come here today to dramatize an appalling condition. In a sense we have 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 would be guaranteed the inalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness…
“Today, we have a nation where African Americans have attained vast material prosperity, as president of the United States, another candidate for president who is a world reknown surgeon, and leaders in many areas besides the political. This will be the day when all of God’s children will be able to sing with a 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. 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 snowcapped Rockies of Colorado! Let freedom ring from the curvaceous peaks of California!…From every mountainside, let freedom ring. When we let 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!”
Billy Graham had gone to Dr. King a decade earlier when their was unrest and protests in the streets. Billy often said, “God does not look on the outside appearances, He looks on the heart” so how to reach red, yellow, black, brown, and white. We all have the same heart underneath and have the same Creator. Dr. King advised Billy about the segregation of the Crusade meetings that he held and thousands came, and sat next to each other, for the first time in many of the areas. King also said that he would continue to work “in the streets, and maybe die there,” as came true April 4, 1968.
Happy Camp is a rural, almost frontier, area with about 980 to 1,190 population or 96.4 persons per square mile, Of that population 62.9% is white, 23.4% is Native American, 6.5 Hispanic, 4.3% are of Asian descent and 0.4% are African American ethnicity. Other things that divide us, unfortunately. What we all need to strive for is love, togetherness and unity. Only working together can we achieve what we all want for our community. Meet a stranger today, welcome someone new, and greet all you meet with a welcoming smile!! When we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old spiritual, “Free at last! free at last! Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!”