Why do We Celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day?

Monday, January 20th of this year comes the annual, national holiday: Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Though most know the day is meant to celebrate strongly significant events in American history, not everyone can truly tell you the depths of its significance. Most see it as a day off from work or school, but don’t truly understand why it’s such an important holiday.

The day wasn’t officially made a federal holiday until 1983, and wasn’t made a state government holiday by all 50 states until 2000. It took 32 years of fighting and campaigning for the holiday to officially be recognized, and the fight to remember its importance still continues.

Though it may seem bizarre to hold a holiday celebrating the actions of one citizen, that’s not even half of what the day is meant to celebrate. Martin Luther King Jr. Day is meant to not only celebrate King’s actions, but also to to memorialize the Civil Rights Movement, and to highlight the importance of taking a stand for what you believe in. Martin Luther King Jr. Day is meant to serve as a reminder of the actions taken by Martin Luther King Jr. and of every man and woman who took a stand during the Civil Rights Movement.

The day is meant to serve as a reminder of what advocating for what you believe in can truly do. It’s meant to prove to us again and again that changes can be made without violence. That putting hard work and dedication into what you believe in can truly move mountains.

Sources:
https://constitutioncenter.org/blog/how-martin-luther-king-jr-s-birthday-became-a-holiday-3

https://www.history.com/news/martin-luther-king-jr-day-controversial-origins-of-the-holiday

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