Martin Luther King, Jr. was one of my first heroes. I grew up in a city that was probably 98% White (give or take a point!) In 1961 when I was 10, I had no idea that other little girls and boys couldn't go to the same schools, share a bus or even drink from a water fountain in many parts of the country. Every morning in school I pledged allegiance to a flag and "One Nation Under God" where everyone was supposed to be equal. One day a neighbor asked me to watch her baby while he was taking a nap, since she had to run to the store. I earned 50 cents an hour! I saw a magazine on a coffee table and began reading it and discovered my neighbor was a member of an organization called the NAACP. When she got home I asked her about what I read and we had a long chat. That was when I first learned about the Civil Rights Movement and the struggle of minorities in America. Coming from a Jewish family, I already knew about the genocide and the war crimes of the Nazis, but I always figured everyone was treated with dignity in the United States. After all, I was 10.
Happy Birthday Dr. King
Published: January 15, 2007, 2:32 pm
Last Edited: January 15, 2007, 2:42 pm