King's Dream Realized?

Obama and King

Obama and King

(Picture from here.)

Today is the inauguration of our very first African American President of the United States.  Barack Obama, after a long, hard campaign, will be sworn in as our 44th President, 46 years after Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech.

According to a CNN poll, more than 2/3 of African Americans believe that King’s dream of race relations has been realized.  According to this UPI article:

The CNN-Opinion Research Corp. poll found 69 percent of blacks said King’s vision fulfilled since his 1963 “I Have a Dream” speech, just about doubling the 34 percent who agreed with that assessment in a similar poll taken last March. The results were released Monday — Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

The number of whites saying King’s dream has been realized rose from 35 percent in March to 46 percent.

“Whites don’t feel the same way — a majority of them say that the country has not yet fulfilled King’s vision,” CNN polling director Keating Holland said.

What do you think?  Has King’s dream been realized?

I’m leaning towards believing that King’s dream has been realized.  Sure, there will still be racist incidents and racist people here and there, and race relations will fluctuate between better and worse, but it’s now possible for an African American to become the most powerful man in the world.  I think that says something, and I think we need to acknowledge that we’ve blown past a major milestone.  I’d rather focus on the positive, and I think we’ve come pretty far, perhaps far enough to say that we’ve achieved it.

What do you think?  Poll below, comment as usual. (thanks, Mama Nabi for the cool poll program)

7 thoughts on “King's Dream Realized?

  1. I’m inspired to write something right now…But its late. and I’m recovering from a sickness, and I work at EARLY tomorrow. Hopefully soon I’ll get around to it.
    But then again, maybe I shouldn’t for the polls sake. (as not to affect it)

  2. As my ancestors would say, the burden is now on Obama’s shoulders to “not bring shame on the family” (his family … the family of African Americans… the family that is Minorities). As a minority President, he has to be that much better. If he is, that will chip away at racism in a big way. This is why i want him to succeed.

  3. Don’t worry about affecting the poll, Jason. I said in the post that I would vote yes, and I’m still “losing!”

    Val, I totally agree! The bar is definitely higher for him, but as long as he can be that much better, the effect on racism will be that much greater.

  4. I will refer you to a portion of the “I Have a Dream” speech that states “… a man will be judged by the content of his character and not by the color of his skin”. Obviously, the election of Pres. Obama did not achieve that because he is lauded (frequently by CNN) as the first African American president. Dr. King’s dream will be realized when the color of skin is a point of true disinterest among the people. You just have to look at the inauguration footage to realize we’re not there yet. Breaking down stereotypes, yes. Character content vice skin color? Nope. Thanks, mass media, for retarding the advancement of American culture.

  5. If the King’s dream was realized,
    Do you think that there would be such a big deal that he is the first black President?
    [Not to bring the luster away, but because once we see him for his skin, we’ve already trapped ourselves into making a deal over it. I think this can be both good, and bad.]

    One of the main themes to Dr. King’s famous speech is the freedom of the “Negro”. The freedom he describes this freedom as not a freedom by law. But a freedom that comes from the integrity of all people in the nation.
    A freedom that treats you like you a the brother [or sister].
    A freedom that says “I respect you” regardless of how obscure you find that persons traditions.
    A freedom that gives those peoples stuck in their neighborhoods of color defined poverty a chance to get themselves out of the cycle.
    The freedom that will give those people a the fighting chance to “make it.”

    On the lighter note, Barack has now placed himself on the stage of world attention. At least the future of America will see something different with a person of color in the position of power. Let us hope that this locks in a new image of leadership in their minds. Let us hope that he may inspire them to do something great with their lives.

    Is this now the realization of what Martin Luther King Jr. spoke of so long ago?
    In my personal opinion, it is not. I don’t feel like many people of color have the opportunities to flourish. However, it falls as in line as one of the greatest steps to making his dream our lives.

    On the off note, I bet Barack has had more people reminding him that he is black these last two years than any other period of his life. Whether for pride, or for criticism.

    [I feel scatterbrained, but thats probably me being distracted by the TV]

  6. Obama has already changed up the the entire atmosphere of racial discussions. I’m surprised how much the whole mood has changed with just the thought that an African American has achieved the highest office in the U.S. and that a black family occupies the White House. Even with me–my words and ideas reflect a new world!

    I think it’s going to take time to assimilate to the new world order (which I think it really is) which is why there’s such a focus on Obama’s race, and I think pockets of racism, sometimes across whole industries, will still exist. Racism will never be completed eradicated. My view is that we’ve passed a critical point with this election, and that now everything else, assuming we continue to do what we are doing, will fall into place.

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