Lev Lazinskiy

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day

| life | politics |

Today is a federal holiday. For those of us in the military and government services it is a nice day off from all of the stress and hassles of work. For other it is another work day. The construction workers that are busy building one of the greatest medical centers in the world are still busy building it. I saw them myself out there in the snow and cold using power tools, moving dirt, and redirecting traffic.

It is supposed to be a day to commemorate one of the greatest civil rights leaders in the history of this great country. It is supposed to be a day that everyone gets together and remembers all of the trials that this country has had to go through in order to get to the place that we are today. It is supposed to be a holiday, a day for celebration, but for some people it is nothing more than a Monday.

It is sad to say that but its the honest truth. “Why isn’t there a JFK day, he was shot too?” That is a comment that I have heard far too many times for my own comfort. “Is there going to be a white history month?” Is another comment that just disgusts every single bone in my body. Some people just don’t get it. Some people don’t understand what we are celebrating on this great day. As Dr. King’s wife Corretta Scott King said “This is not a black holiday; it is a peoples’ holiday.” I could not have said it better myself. This day is a day that we can celebrate all of the achievements that we have accomplished in this country when it comes to civil rights and freedom. Is it perfect? No, of course not. There is still a lot of work to be done. But over the last 100 years we have built the foundation and made huge progress to truly create equality for all citizens of this country.

It is frustrating to look around and see how many ungrateful people there are living here. Coming from a third world war torn country I know what its like to have nothing. I know what its like to stand in line for hours just to get a piece of moldy bread. I know whats its like to fear for the life of yourself and your family. Ever since arriving here on free soil in 1994 I have never had to experience any of those things. I am grateful for it and I hope no one here ever has to experience them at all. But sometimes I would love to just transplant all of these ignorant people into a third world country for one week so they can see just how good they have it.

Like I said before no country, no man, no government, nothing and no one is perfect nor will they ever be. But I guarantee you two things. One, we live in the greatest country in history. Not because we have better values, not because we have more freedoms, not because our government makes all the right decisions. But because the people of this country will never stop fighting for what is right. The people of this country have a spirit that will not be destroyed by terrorists, threats, bombs, planes, injustice, inequality, or racism. All of the negative things in the world fuel our spirit and allow us to rise higher than we ever have been before. Two, we have a country that gives us the opportunity to make change and achieve better things. No other country in history has been through so much in such a short period of time and remained a world super power.

Over the last three hundred years we have been through countless wars, lost countless soldiers, destroyed countless families. We have struggled through depressions, epidemics, oppression, injustice, slavery, and so much more. But we have learned from our mistakes and continually make progress. We are living in a very exciting time in our country. We are about to experience great change. These last 8 years have been tough but we have learned a lot and are determined to make the right decisions from here on out. We have a new presidents that provides hope for so many people. Hope for a better economy, more freedom, less hate, less destruction, more common sense!

Today is meant to be a day to celebrate and serve. Look back on all we have been through and look forward to the challenges that face us in the years ahead. I am determined and sure that we will persevere like we always have. I invite anyone who questions why we have this holiday to educate yourself. Read this speech.

Through all our trials and struggles we cannot forget that this country was founded on the principles of freedom and equality. Dr. King had a dream, and I am beginning to see that dream come true. It feels great.

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