On August 28, 1963, Martin Luther King Jr. stood in front of nearly 300,000 civil right supporters on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. and delivered a speech that is powerful over 50 years.
Every January, citizens around the country stop and celebrate MLK and the message he sent on a daily basis while fighting for civil rights.
54 years after that speech, Richmond student-athletes still feel the effects of MLK’s work.
Here’s what MLK means to some of the Spider student-athletes in their own words.
“Today is a day rightfully chosen to celebrate and honor a man who fought for the civil rights for African-Americans, and equality for those in poverty or those faced any sort of injustice. With that being said, it is an important day for students at U of R to examine and recognize what they are doing to help ameliorate the country that we live in today. I’m excited and thankful that Richmond provides us with numerous opportunities to do just that both on campus, and off.”
– Marshea Robinson (So.), Track & Field
“My favorite quote by Martin Luther King is, “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy”. Not only does this quote address the measure of a man, this is also the “ultimate measure” of a WOMAN. The athletic field, in addition to athletes has proven to be powerful when it comes to civil rights and racial justice. In sport we value you the same values that King embodied: determination, hard work, and fairness. Martin Luther King, thank you for selflessly working, marching, speaking on topic of love, peace and justice. You ultimately gave your life for racial equality, and for that – I am grateful. Without you, and many other unspoken heroes, who knows where we would be today.”
– Jaide Hinds-Clarke (Fr.), Women’s Basketball
“Progress… But nowhere close. As a nation, we have made great strides, but we’re still not even halfway through the race yet. Martin Luther King Jr. Day is not a day to only remember and thank one man for his efforts. Rather, the day can be seen as a moment of silence for all the peacekeepers and activists, men and women, young and old, dead and alive who have fought for, spoke out for, sat in for, marched for, and lobbied legislation for equality and human rights. A mouthful I know, but there is much more that could said on the subject(s)… and like I said, there is still much more to be done.”
– Jacob Roberson (R-Fr.), Football