Jan 192004
Authors: Carmen Filosa

Thirty-five years ago, Martin Luther King Jr. shared his message

of equality. On Monday, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, CSU students

remembered this message and his teachings while commemorating his


Martin Luther King Jr. Day, which was made an official national

holiday in 1986, reserves the third Monday of January in

remembrance of King and his ideas of non-violence and equality.

“On this holiday, we commemorate the universal, unconditional

love, forgiveness and nonviolence that empowered his revolutionary

spirit,” said Coretta Scott King, King’s wife at the time of his

death, in an article on the King Center Web site.

According to the King Center, it is important to continue King’s

teachings by remembering not only Martin Luther King Jr., but also

his teachings and his messages concerning non-violence and human


Theresa Grangruth, an administrative assistant for Black Student

Services who was on the committee for the MLK celebration at CSU,

said it is important to remember King because he wanted equality

for everyone.

“He was not a person who was concerned just about African

American rights, but all human rights,” Grangruth said.

Kris Folsom, coordinator of the Lory Student Center, said she

thinks celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. Day is key to remembering

his message.

“It helps us celebrate the legacy of a man who was instrumental

to bringing issues of social justice to the public,” Folsom


Robyn Irons, an interior design senior, said King was imperative

to the civil rights movement.

“He made people think about the inequality of black people

versus white people,” Irons said.

Irons said King was important because he influenced others to

fight for the cause.

“We must remember what we were like as a nation before and what

he did for us,” Irons said.

Many at CSU feel that Martin Luther King’s 35-year-old message

can be applied even to modern day issues.

“There’s still work to be done,” Grangruth said.

Grangruth said even today King’s ideas can still educate others

about the importance of making a message heard and standing up for

what is right.

“I think he would teach us more about the issues at hand and

more about taking action and not just talking,” Grangruth said.

James White, interim assistant director of Black Student

Services, said he thinks King should be remembered for his

non-violent protests.

“I think he can still teach us the message of non-violence and

working toward educating people about racial equality but in a

non-violent way,” White said.

White said many could learn from King, especially now with a

hip-hop culture that sometimes promotes messages of violence.

“We should continue striving for (the non-violent message),”

White said.

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