Who's Martin Luther King Jr?

Who's Martin Luther King Jr?

Martin Luther King Jr was born on January 15, 1929 in Atlanta, Georgia, United States and died on April 4, 1968 when he was shot dead on the balcony of a motel where he was staying in Tennessee, United States. Martin Luther King was a great defender of human rights who was originally called Michael King Jr. his father, pastor of a Baptist church, traveled to Germany at some point and was fascinated by the history of the leader of the Protestant Reformation, Martin Luther. Such was his impression that he not only changed his name but also his five-year-old son, Michael Jr.

Martin studied in public schools and graduated from high school at just 15 years old, so he went to college where he studied sociology and theology. He became the pastor of Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama. There he began his peaceful fight for civil rights, mainly for the right to vote, labor and basic civil rights, and discrimination against the African-American population, who were segregated on bus, bathrooms, and schools. His oratory ability makes him one of the most influential figures of the moment during the 1950s and 1960s, leading different peaceful protests.

In 1963 he was arrested for organizing and leading a boycott of massive peaceful demonstrations on public transport. He was released by then President John F. Kennedy upon reading his essay explaining why he protested. That same year he delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, in front of 250,000 marchers at the Washington March for Jobs and Freedom. In 1964 the Civil Rights Bill requested by Dr. King and proposed by President Kennedy was passed. On October 14 of that same year, he received the Nobel Peace Prize for his fight for social justice and civil rights, becoming the youngest man to receive this recognition, at only 35 years old.

Later, in late March 1968, he traveled to Tennessee to support a protest by African-American garbage collectors seeking to improve their working conditions. On April 4, while staying at a motel, he was shot to death. After a 15-year struggle, in 1983 the United States Congress passed the bill of federal MLK day on the third Monday in January, which was first celebrated in 1986 and celebrated by all 50 states in the year 2000. 

Dr. King Jr's influence is such that we continue to celebrate him today and continue to be a figure of equality, justice and inspiration to all who know his story.

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