Sipping coffee, I look at the lights turn on one by one, as the neighborhood awakens. In a neighborhood where I could have never lived in if it wasn’t for the efforts of this man. Not because where I live now is better than where I grew up. Society’s attitude is better. I remember as a child the speech of this brave man. Every year during this time, I heard a speech of hope, love, determination, and courage. It was one hell of a dream.
Now a seasoned man, I wonder if my efforts in life have helped fulfill that dream. Most of my life I spent fighting for God, Country, and the ideal of freedom. Countless hours spent away in pursuit of the dream on the mountain top. Endless miles walked for the dream of the Promised Land. No mile of this did I walk alone. Each mile walked and every hour spent away, was in the faith that a moment of hatred was erased. I hoped they would ring the bell of freedom. A sound heard in the souls of each man and woman in the land. A faith I held onto with all my might, even though it was sometimes fleeting ….
Each time I heard the word Jew, it took away a little bit of hope. Every time I heard the word cracker the freedom bell rung a little softer. Every time I heard the word spick or chili pepper, humanity’s love got a little weaker. Each time I heard the word nigger, humanity’s dignity lessened. However, each time I heard these words I fought a little harder to fulfill the dream of a man I never knew. I fought a little harder to fulfill a dream, our forefathers had written over a hundred years before my birth.
I look upon my granddaughter who shifts under her blanket of freedom. A freedom provided from the fulfillment of this dream. Today a year older, she is allowed to live in a world and taste the crispness of a freedom that wouldn’t have been without his dream. A smile comes across my face as I finish my coffee. I smack my lips, because I too taste the crispness of freedom in the fresh morning air.