WHEREAS, Martin Luther King, Jr. was a passionate activist, outstanding leader, and inspiring pastor who devoted his life to advancing equality, justice, and opportunity for all people; and
WHEREAS, he was driven by a deep-rooted belief that a person’s worth ought not be measured by their skin color or culture, but rather by the content and quality of his or her character; and
WHEREAS, as the spokesman and leader of the civil rights movements, he wielded organized nonviolence, civil disobedience, and truth to affect meaningful change and overcome widespread injustice toward African Americans, the economically disadvantaged, and the oppressed; and
WHEREAS, with unrelenting determination, in the eyes of the entire nation, he promoted the dignity and individual rights of every person and the necessity of equality and justice for all, and, in doing so, ushered our nation into a new era of peace, justice, and equality; and
WHEREAS, in his historic “I Have a Dream” speech, a watershed moment for the Civil Rights Movement, Dr. King shared his vision of a future in which “this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal’”; and
WHEREAS, following his speech, and largely as a result of his influence, congress passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964, ending segregation in public places and banning employment discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin, and the Voting Rights Act, which guaranteed the right to vote to all African Americans; and
WHEREAS, Dr. King’s words and actions are not simply relics of an era past, but a call to vigilance, as pertinent today as they were during his lifetime, and it is incumbent upon us all to carry forward the principles of peace, equality, and service exemplified by Dr. King, by treating everyone with the same great measure of courtesy, dignity, and respect.
NOW THEREFORE, I, Michael J. Dunleavy, GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF ALASKA, do hereby proclaim January 21, 2019 as:
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
in Alaska, and call on all Alaskans to reflect on the words and service of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, to celebrate his life and influence on our nation, and consider their responsibility to bring peace, equality, and respect to their homes and communities.