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Character Education Black History Month At the Crossroads of Freedom and Equality: The Emancipation Proclamation and the March on Washington A publication of the Afro-American Newspapers

The Baltimore Afro-American Newspaper 2519 N. Charles Street Baltimore, MD 21218 (410) 554-8200 The Washington Afro-American Newspaper 1917 Benning Road NE Washington, DC 20002 (202) 332-0080 John J. Oliver Jr. Chairman/Publisher Executive Editor Avis Thomas-Lester Character Education Project Manager Diane Hocker Character Education Coordinator Takiea Hinton Project Editor Rev. Dorothy Boulware Layout Denise Dorsey Cover Design Denise Dorsey Vickie Johnson

Table of Contents 4 Black History Introduction 5 Character Education Profile: BGE 6 ‘Tell ‘em About the Dream’ 8 Character Education Profile: College Savings Plans of Maryland

9 Character Education Profile: College Savings Plans of Maryland

11 Character Education Profile: Legg Mason 13 Character Education Profile: Verizon

Cover Photos: Courtesy Office.Microsoft.com, AFRO Archives

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Welcome to Character Education 2013

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he Afro-American Newspapers’ Character Education program is designed to promote positive character traits in our public school students. Each year, several corporate professionals and business leaders join our effort and share stories that illustrate how the building of their character not only helps them personally but also in the workplace. During Black History Month, the AFRO is delivered to public middle schools across the region including Anne Arundel County, Baltimore City and Baltimore County, Howard County, Montgomery County, Prince George’s County and Washington, D.C. Each publication contains the testimonies of our corporate partners. How does it work? During the AFRO’s Black History Month series – the newspapers’ most active and sought after series each year– we feature a Black History and Character Education publication that profiles diverse corporate professionals, their success stories and helpful strategies for planning a successful career. Each week, eighth-graders in participating Afro-American Newspapers

jurisdictions receive the publication at no cost. The goal is for students to read the featured profiles and Black history content and submit an essay connecting what they’ve learned from a particular profile to the importance of character building. Winners of the essay contest are awarded valuable prizes to further their education and an opportunity to meet the corporate professional they chose to write about. Why eighth-graders? Our research shows that by the eighth grade, most students have started to seriously think about their career goals and and are more receptive to the information shared by the business community. How can the schools help? • Allow the AFRO to deliver Character Education to your school on a weekly basis throughout the month of February. In addition, provide the Afro-American Newspapers in your school’s media center or library on a weekly basis for the current calendar year. • Assist in coordinating the distribution of the publication within participating school districts. February 16, 2013

• Identify a liaison to advise us on information concerning character education that can be included in each edition. • Encourage teachers and students to participate in the essay contest.

How do schools benefit? • The AFRO encourages staff and students of participating schools to submit stories, columns, photos, etc., about the importance of education and good character. • During February, all participating schools receive the Character Education publication to assist students in their learning of Black history and to further promote literacy. Partnership opportunity Corporations, nonprofits and other organizations are invited to become strategic partners with this campaign. By becoming a partner, your company will help provide the AFRO as an educational tool to eighth-graders throughout the region. In addition, your company will illustrate its support for professional development among today’s youth. Character Education/Black History Month

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ally fueled by the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

he Emancipation Proclamation mandated freedom for Black slaves, 150 years ago, opening doors to unknown opportunities, clearing roads to previously unimagined destinations.

Some newly freed Americans were afraid so they “stayed put.” Others went out on their own but soon returned for whatever reasons.

Most poignantly, a dream articulated by a young Black man, a Nobel Prize winner, a Baptist preacher, son of a Baptist preacher. The estimated 250,000 people gathered at the foot of the Lincoln Memorial on August 28, 1963, were accosted with a phraseology unheard of – being judged on the content of character rather than skin color, black children and white children playing peacefully together, rings of justice sounding from the south as well as the north. This Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. headlined the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom organized by A. Phillip Randolph and other civil rights leaders who had the audacity to take it to the capital, built by slaves, and demand the American dream for all people.

But many ventured forth to become the “firsts” that we celebrate each year during the shortest month of the year. Here at the AFRO, the celebration is ongoing and is alive and well in AFRO archives that detail the ascendancy from slave to sharecropper to landowner to entrepreneur.

At this time, the Civil Rights Act backed by then president John Kennedy was being held hostage in Congress. Demonstrations had been held all over the country. The time was right. The right combination of people were at the planning table. Those who wanted a seat were ready to claim it. The full freedom that had been pending was again demanded, and not just for African Americans, but a conscious sense of justice that should be had by all.

The journey was long and hard with many bumps in the road, but they persevered and became our heroes and sheroes. They laid the foundation for generations to come who would have the audacity to dream a dream of freedom that extended beyond separate but equal – a dream fueled by Brown v. Board of Education, a dream eventuSeptember 7, 1963 AFRO Edition Reproduced with

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permission of the

copyright owner.

Further reproduc

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Be a Good Listener When I was very young, I received a valuable piece of advice: talk less and listen more. Although I’m not sure how much I appreciated this advice at the time, I have come to understand the value of listening to others, especially when our opinions on issues differ. In the 7th grade, I made a conscious decision to focus on my schoolwork with a goal of being accepted into Western High School, which had a long history of academic excellence. It was extremely difficult to tune out my friends who were used to me being part of every conversation and instead pay attention to my teachers. In the end, it paid off. Not only did I have the best grades of my life that year—and the best reports on parent/teacher night—I was accepted into Western High School‘s advanced college preparatory program. This early academic success paved the way for further success at Towson University where I received a bachelor’s degree in mass communication. After many years as a radio news reporter, which included spending a year as a freelance journalist in Los Angeles, I decided to pursue a career in public relations. For 10 years, I was the spokesperson for BGE, responding to media inquiries and managing the company’s relationship with the press. In this role, I was responsible for ensuring that the media reported accurate information during major events such as Hurricanes Isabel and Irene, the back-to-back snowstorms of 2010, and other events where large numbers of customers were without electric and/or natural gas. A few years into my BGE career, I decided to pursue a master’s degree. Although it was extremely challenging and timeconsuming, I earned my degree, at night, from Loyola University Maryland. Today, I am manager of local affairs in BGE’s governmental affairs department, working as BGE’s liaison to public and elected officials in Baltimore City and Baltimore County. This role is all about managing relationships. What I like most about my job is that it gives me the opportunity to work directly with politicians and community leaders to address issues that involve BGE. I am also able to interact with communities and individual customers in a way that makes me more sensitive to their needs and concerns and enables me to look at issues from their perspectives – it allows me to practice listening more and talking less, a life lesson that I put into practice every day. I’m blessed to have the successes I have with my career and am grateful for the advice I received when I was younger. My advice to a middle school student is to not let others discourage you from achieving your dream. At the end of the day, you have more control over your destiny than any other person. Don’t let the short-term temptation interfere with long-term success.

Linda Foy

Manager, Local Affairs, Government Affairs

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‘Tell ‘em About the Dream’ By Zenitha Prince Special to the AFRO

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hough it was called the March on Washington, the historic civil rights event of Aug. 28, 1963 didn’t involve much marching. Sure the more than 250,000 persons gathered walked together the short distance from the Washington Monument to the Lincoln Memorial. But, mostly, they listened— listened as the leaders of the event brought messages of encouragement and disillusionment; unity and righteous anger, hope and sorrow, appeals and demands that a recalcitrant Congress and White House would finally deliver civil rights legislation that would banish the ugly specter of segregation and fulfill the promise of freedom first voiced by the Emancipation Proclamation more than 100 years before. “Everyone was waiting for something Continued on page 10

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We're proud to support

the 16th Annual Character Education Program

1st Mariner Bank is committed to our community. We are always looking for ways to improve the areas where our employees live, work and play. When 1st Mariner partners with local organizations, our employees often offer their time and knowledge, as well as funds. Stop by your local branch today and find out how we built this bank for you.

For more information, call 410-558-3343 or 1-866-362-4500. www.1stmarinerbank.com

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A Head Start is a Good Start I come from a southern, hard-working family. My mother had to work so we needed to be somewhere in a structured program. My older sister and I went to a pre-k program and it was run by a lady named Mrs. Myrtle Huffman. She never had children herself but she and her husband were absolutely lovely and they were ‘the salt of the earth’. Not only did she take really great care of us, and I will say this, and I know the separation of church and state, but she was a very Christian woman. She wore white all the time and was very proper, if you will, about what one said, how one dressed, how one comported him or herself. And so while we were surrounded by love, it was this formal intervention in which we learned things. When we went to kindergarten, we were ready. We had experiences where we went on trips, such as to the Scheile Museum that was like a planetarium in Gaston County, N.C. where we lived. We would go to places like that and be engaged in learning about things outside of our normal day and our normal environment. I had one of those wacky December birthdays and school policy was, if by September ‘x’ or October ‘y’, a child was not going to be six years old, they could not start school. So we went to Catholic School as an entrée into our K-12 education. Education was always important and because my mother and my family believed in education, they wanted us to have better opportunities than they had. Education was critical, but it was also critical that my mother needed to work. We needed daycare, and she thought it was far more beneficial for us to be in some sort of structured environment than it would be for us to be with a babysitter. So I know very well what an impact a strong early learning development program can have on children and not only about just the academic learning and knowing things like the numbers, the colors and being able to read, but also the social interactions and how to deal with our peers and how to respect other adults outside of the home. It was very powerful in preparing me for school.

Dr. Lillian Lowery

State Superintendent of Schools

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A Little Discomfort Can be Good There I was practicing with my high school volleyball team at St. Stephen’s Episcopal School in Austin, Texas, when the drama teacher tapped me on my shoulder. He was casting “Blithe Spirit,” a play by Noel Coward, and he wanted me to try out for the lead. My first reaction was surprise. I had never been in a play, never thought about being in a play, and was comfortable playing volleyball. Being in the play would mean leaving the team. And it would be difficult to memorize all those lines. But then other thoughts took over—this would be something different. Trying something new and unfamiliar might be good. I said “yes” and decided to step out of my comfort zone. I landed the part and delivered a crowd-pleasing Madame Arcati. At 16 years old, I had not begun to realize how much I had already started to step out of my comfort zone. I was spending my second year at a boarding school at which I was one of only seven African Americans among 225 students. Preparing for college, I wanted to go to a part of country that I had never visited. I did not apply to any schools in Texas, my home state. I spent four years at Wellesley College outside of Boston. And what did I major in? French, of all things, because I loved literary analysis, but analyzing literature in another language was more challenging. I earned my master’s degree in comparative literature at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, another part of the country that I had never visited before. Unknowingly, I had already started down the path of embracing the unfamiliar, of putting myself in situations outside of my comfort zone. This behavior has served me well. When I moved to Bradenton, Fla. after I was married, I had the confidence to walk into the local newspaper’s office and apply for a job as a reporter. I had never taken a journalism course and I had never written a news article. But I had the confidence, the strength, and the drive to try something new. I landed the job as the education reporter. During my years there, I asked for, and was granted, permission to interview Coretta Scott King, Barbara Bush and Nancy Reagan. In my formative years as a public relations professional in higher education, I grabbed the opportunity to add different skills to my experiences, drafting speeches and asking to interview University of Maryland Alumna Judith Resnik, who would a few years later lose her life in the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster. Now, as the vice chancellor for communications for the University System of Maryland, I often look back at my childhood in Houston, and my three years at St. Stephen’s. My ability to not only survive but to thrive in situations outside of my comfort zone has deep roots. I am the child of parents who took me with them to march in civil rights demonstrations and to encourage people to register to vote. Fortunately, I have not been afraid to step out of my comfort zone. As a result, I have had wonderful opportunities and have been amazed by what I’ve learned about my potential and abilities. I challenge others— especially young people—to dare to be more than what they already know.

Anne Johnson Moultrie

Vice Chancellor for Communications, University System of Maryland

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to elevate us,” remembers Molefi Kete Asante, a Temple University professor and author of more than 75 books on African-American history and culture, who attended the march in his youth. According to an account in a Sept. 7, 1963 edition of the AFRO, 12 of the event’s planners spoke that day, interspersed with prayers and music from the likes of folk singer Joan Baez, Mahalia Jackson and Odetta. A group that included Camilia Williams; Peter, Paul and Mary; Josh White and the Freedom Singers offered an interpretation of the march in song: “Freedom riders ain’t scared of no dogs; Freedom riders ain’t scared…; I want my freedom.” A. Phillip Randolph, founder of the Brotherhood of the Sleeping Car Porters, senior statesman of the leaders and the director of the event, was given pride of place, speaking first. Randolph, according to the AFRO, exacted this pledge from the racially diverse multitude: “I pledge that I will join and support all actions undertaken in good faith in accord with the time-honored democratic tradition of nonviolent protest, of peaceful assembly and petition, and of redress through the courts and the legislative process. “I pledge to carry the message of the march to my friends and neighbors back home and to arouse them to an equal commitment and to an equal effort. “I will march and I will send letters. I will demonstrate and I will vote. I will work to make sure that my voice and those of my brothers ring clear and determined from every corner of our land. “I pledge my heart and my mind and my body, unequivocally and without regard to personal sacrifice, to the achievement of social justice.” The Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth, cofounder of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, reiterated the call for unified AFRO Archives action, shouting, “We are Dr. Ralph Bunche

AFRO Archives

Bayard Rustin and Roy Wilkins going to march together, groan together, pray together for freedom, freedom, freedom now.” Whitney M. Young, executive director of the National Urban League, focused on the issue of jobs and promised further action if Congress did not acknowledge the injustice that discrimination had perpetuated and take remedial steps to correct the damage. “This is a march just begun,” he declared. James Farmer, the national director of the Congress of Racial Equality, was also slated to speak, but chose to remain with 232 other freedom fighters in a Donaldsonville, La. jail. Floyd McKissick, a CORE aide, read his message, which said in part that the fight for legal and economic freedom would not stop “until the dogs stop biting us in the South and the rats stop biting us in the North.” Continued on page 12

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Rules Create a Safety Net “Count your blessings young lady”, words said by my mom when I was a child growing up. It was not until I became an adult that I realized what that meant. My parents were working class immigrants that wanted the very best for my sister and I. We grew up in a small but comfortable home and both parents worked long hours to make sure that we had everything that they did not have growing up. Because my parents worked many hours my sister and I were latch key kids. Back when I was growing up a latch key kid was a young child that went home after school to a house with no adult supervision. It was that way for me from the age of 6. The rule was straight into the house, homework and prep for dinner. Once my parents got home we would eat dinner. Unlike most kids my age after dinner was designated for homework, reading and preparing for the next day. TV was not allowed during the school week unless it was the news. To me not being able to watch TV was just plain cruelty! Another rule in my house was no junk food and unlike most kids our weekend was spent going to a museum or library. As you could tell, I was not your average kid growing up. What I thought was mean and different actually helped mold me into a well rounded adult. Being a latch key kid helped me discover the importance of being responsible at an early age. Not being able to watch TV on school nights gave me focus and kept me studious which helped me develop good study habits going into college. Visiting museums on the weekend gave me a great appreciation for art and gave me a worldly outlook on life. As a kid it’s not always easy to understand why we have to do certain things and follow certain rules but rest assured, whatever it is there is a reason for it. It is ok to question something if you don’t understand but be respectful and open to what is being asked of you as one day you may be thankful that you had that experience.

Binta Forrest

Assistance Vice President, Human Resources Analyst

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The speeches moved at a good clip; each speaker was given three minutes to speak. Walter P. Reuther, president of the International Union, UAW, called on Congress to rise above partisan politics and enact the civil rights bill. “This really should be the first step to mobilize the moral conscience of the nation,” he told the throng. The Rev. Eugene C. Blake, vice chairman of the Commission on Religion and Race, an initiative of the National Council of Churches, deplored the segregation that still existed in America and the complicity of the religious community. “We come to march behind and with those amazingly able leaders of the colored Americans, who, to the shame of almost every white American, have alone and without us, mirrored the suffering of the cross of Jesus Christ.” The National Catholic Conference for Interracial Justice’s Matthew Ahmann also spoke as did Rabbi Uri Miller, then-president of the Synagogue Council of America, who offered up a prayer that God would enable Americans to “understand that our society…is one piece; that when any part of this society suffers we all suffer…that he who discriminates is as morally hurt as is

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the humblest of us, and not for the sake of the colored citizen but for the sake of America.” Actor Harry Belafonte read a statement on behalf of a group of artists supporting the march, which included Marlon Brando, Charlton Heston, author James Baldwin, Lena Horne, Sidney Poitier and more. And, in a signature moment, internationally-acclaimed performer Josephine Baker addressed the crowd—the only woman to give a speech at the event. “Josephine Baker had some very strong notions about America. But she always felt a deep yearning to become part

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the one discriminated against.” Rabbi Joachim Prinz, president of the American Jewish Congress, drew parallels between the Jews’ persecution during the Hitler regime in Germany and the African-American plight, saying that as in the time of the Holocaust, public silence was the Negroes’ enemy. “America must not become a nation of onlookers. It must not be silent,” he said. “…It must speak up and act, from the president down to

Character Education/Black History Month

AFRO Archives

Josephine Baker

of the rise of the African-American people,” professor Asante said. Securing the involvement of the wildly successful singer was a great achievement, Asante and

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other historians note. Living in self-imposed exile in France, Baker was an outspoken critic of the great American hypocrisy inherent in segregation and other de jure systems of discrimination against Blacks. “You know, friends, that I do not lie to you when I tell you I have walked into the palaces of kings and queens and into the houses of presidents.  And much more. But I could not walk into a hotel in America and get a cup of coffee, and that made me mad.  And when I get mad, you know that I open my big mouth.  And then look out, ‘cause when Josephine opens her mouth, they hear it all over the world,” she told the attentive crowd. Her outspokenness drew government reprisal, she said, and she was “hounded” by U.S. government agencies and accused of being a communist. Baker lauded the spirit of unity and courage that had fueled the event and offered her support to buttress the movement. “I am not a young woman now, friends.  My life is behind me.  There is not too much fire burning inside me.  And before it goes out, I want you to use what is left to light that fire in you.  So that you can carry on, and so that you can do those things that I have done,” she said. Even as a parade of speakers took to the podium, controversy brewed backstage. John Lewis, the new Continued on page 14

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Character or Credibility Do you say what you mean and mean what you say? This is a basic determination of character. Within your school, community and/or home there are countless examples of people who exemplify good character. When you make a commitment, do you work hard to live up to that commitment? That is a great indicator of character and gives your word credibility. Although you may not always be successful, do you give your best effort? As a student, strong character is displayed in your approach to your studies, peer relationships, and displays of respect. These are basic character traits that will follow you and serve as your foundation in life. In life we often change. Many of the changes are driven by how we view ourselves and often times those changes are character changes. We evolve throughout our lives and hopefully for the better. Can I say to you today I saw where my life would take me? The answer to that question is still being answered. Each day brings new challenges and in facing those challenges my character is confronted. From Springhill Elementary School to Baltimore Polytechnic Institute to Morgan State University to Stevens Institute of Technology, I can say my character has been challenged at every stage. I cannot honestly say I was successful at meeting the challenge 100% of the time but 99.999% I have. From boyhood to manhood, from single to married, to fatherhood character challenges have presented themselves every step of the way and my character has remained as a force. Thus, I believe my character has played a large part in my successes and failures. For that I am ever grateful because my character traits make me who I am. Lastly, character or credibility: are they synonymous and/or does one lead to another? It is up to you to decide how they apply to your life.

Quadre’ M. Washington Manager – Switch Engineering, Project Management, Voice Mail Systems MD, DC, DE, PA, Upstate NY

Afro-American Newspapers

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leader of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, had written a fiery speech meant to scorch the duplicitous hearts in both the White House and in Congress, but some of the more conservative leaders objected, fearing a backlash. “SNCC wanted to push a more aggressive

respectively, seemed to belie their stated intent to change the status quo. In his uncensored speech, Lewis decried Kennedy’s civil rights bill as “too little, too late,” and denounced the “cheap political leaders who build their careers on immoral compromises and ally themselves with open forms of political, economic and social exploitation.” He cited the Albany and Americus arrests directly, saying the federal government was complicit in the discrimination against Blacks. “In Albany, Georgia, nine of our leaders have been indicted not by Dixiecrats but by the federal government for peaceful protest. But what did the federal government do when Albany’s deputy sheriff beat attorney C. B. King and left him half dead? What did the federal government do when local police officials kicked and assaulted the pregnant wife of Slater King, and she lost her baby?” he questioned. “It seems to me that the Albany indictment is part of a conspiracy on the part of the federal government and local politicians in the interest of expediency. “I want to know, which side is the federal government on?” He later concluded, “The time will come when we will not confine our marching to Washington. We will march through the South, through the heart of Dixie, the way Sherman did. We shall pursue our own ‘scorched earth’ policy and burn Jim Crow to the ground — nonviolently. We shall fragment the South into a thousand pieces and put them back together in the image of democracy. We will make the action of the past few months look

“And then look out, ‘cause when Josephine opens her mouth, they hear it all over the world.”

JOSEPHINE BAKER

tone at the march. They wanted to confront the Kennedy administration,” said Gregory Carr, professor of history at Howard University. At the heart of Lewis’ speech was a disillusionment gained while “shuttling between Southern jails and luxurious salons of power,” as historian Taylor Branch describes in Parting the Waters: America in the King Years 1954-63. As Lewis advanced in the movement, he had come to know President Kennedy and Attorney General Robert Kennedy during their discussions about the administration’s civil rights agenda. But, the federal government’s recent arrest and indictment of Black protestors in Albany and Americus, Ga.—many of them Lewis’ friends—on specious charges of obstruction of justice and sedition,

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The heat did not stop them and they were cooled with the help of the water.

petty. And I say to you, WAKE UP AMERICA!” In his actual delivery, Lewis—who had a speech impediment—removed his characterization of Kennedy’s legislation and the word “cheap.” He also tempered his incendiary conclusion, removing reference to Union Gen. William Sherman’s march “through the heart of Dixie” during the Civil War; and added a line that read, “But we will march with the spirit of love and with the spirit of dignity that we have shown here today.” Despite the changes, Lewis’ speech was one of the better-received. Still, to the tens of thousands gathered on the National Mall, even his address was a mere prologue to the one they had travelled

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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.” Much of the speech was the reworked text of a sermon the Baptist minister had already preached on the issues of interracial cooperation, social equality and justice. “The occasion introduced King’s everyday pulpit rhetoric as a national hymn,” Branch, the author, wrote. But the most famous and impactful part of the speech, historians say, came by way of providence, via singer Mahalia Jackson. “Mahalia Jackson’s most important contribution to the march wasn’t her singing,” said Howard University’s Carr. “At a critical moment in King’s speech, Mahalia Jackson proclaimed while standing behind him, ‘Tell ‘em about the AFRO Archives dream, Martin,’” referring to Not everyone knows the March was something he had said in a speech he for “jobs and freedom.” gave in Detroit two months before. At that point, King moved into an improvisational part of his speech, which elevated pursuit of happiness. the address to the one of the most highly regarded “Instead of honoring this sacred obligation, in history. America has given the Negro people a bad check, “…I have a dream that one day this nation will a check which has come back marked ‘insufficient rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: funds.’ But we refuse to believe that the bank We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all of justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that men are created equal….’ there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of “I have a dream that my four little children will opportunity of this nation. So we have come to miles and persevered under a burning sun to hear. And, finally, the moment arrived. The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. took to the microphone, escorted by the sounds of a thundering standing ovation. “Martin Luther King was the obvious choice to make for the main speech because he was the most well- known,” Asante, the historian, said. “We have come to our nation’s capital to cash a check,” he said, the promissory note signed by the nation’s founders that guaranteed every American the unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the

Afro-American Newspapers

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,” King said in the musical cadence of a fired up Black preacher.

“I have a dream...”

DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING JR.

February 16, 2013

“… 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 when this happens, when we allow freedom to 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!” The 17-minute speech emotionally moved both the crowd gathered at the foot of the Lincoln Memorial and television audiences around the world. A masterpiece of rhetoric, the address— perhaps better than anything else—advanced the causes of the march. “His speech drowned out almost any other idea… It was a great crescendo” to the day, recalled Asante, who attended the march. “People felt it was a moment of great impact.”

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Afro-American Newspapers’ Character Education Essay Contest

Eighth-Graders Only

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he Afro-American Newspapers’ Character Education Contest was launched 16 years ago to promote positive character development among the nation’s leaders of tomorrow – our youth. We believe good character has to be taught and modeled, which is why we have chosen to profile local corporate professionals and business leaders in our publication. The featured individuals, time and time again, incorporate positive character traits – such as honesty, respect, responsibility, courage and perseverance – in their everyday lives, proving to be positive role models in their community. For the contest, students are asked to read the featured profiles and choose the one that inspires them most to incorporate positive

character traits in their own lives. Students should then write an essay that best explains why they chose the article and how they plan to use what they’ve learned to shape their future. • Essays should be between two and four pages in length (doublespaced) and must be typed. • Essays will be judged on neatness, grammar, punctuation and the student’s ability to give insight on what they learned from the profile. Judges are impartial volunteers and may include teachers, staff from local colleges and universities and the editorial staff at the AFRO.

For more information concerning the Afro-American Newspapers’ Character Education Contest, please contact: Diane Hocker, 410-554-8243.

Cash prizes to be awarded

Deadline: April 8, 2013 Mail typed essays to:

Diane Hocker • Afro-American Newspapers 2519 N. Charles Street • Baltimore, Md. 21218 or e-mail them to: charactereducation@afro.com No faxes will be accepted 16

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AFRO Black History Character Education 2013 - Week 3