Saturday, September 10, 2011

Photo Gallery: A Stone of Hope

By Robert Valencia

I had the opportunity to travel to Washington, DC on the Labor Day weekend to see the newest monument in the capital’s Tidal Basin: The Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial.  Seated between the Lincoln and Jefferson Memorials, it is the first time an American figure who’s not a president receives such an honor, and for the first time, one could say that the boundary of state and church became somewhat blurry, given the fact that he was a Baptist clergyman.

This time, the dynamics of this article is not to “preach to the choir,” that is, to add more fodder surrounding the memorial by way of op-eds and articles. Much has been said already about the significance of such a masterpiece and what it represents amid a political gridlock in Washington and the state of morality in America. This is, however, more than just a personal recount of what I saw during my visit: as a friend used to say, the language engraved on those marble walls is a universal one, even though the struggle was meant in particular to defend the rights of African Americans and the disadvantaged overall.

These pictures I took with Hipstamatic contain remarkable quotes from the immolated leader under a bright, sunny day; a reminder that there’s so much to be done in terms of defending our civil and human rights 50 years later. The monument to Luther King Jr. is certainly a eulogy for his work, but our actions and respect to one another and its subsequent projection to the rest of the world will highly extol his memory.  I highly recommend whoever is reading this article to visit his monument. It surely is…uplifting.

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