Martin Luther King III: “We must redouble and quadruple our efforts”

Taking the same spot that his father, the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., took 50 years ago, Martin Luther King III spoke of progress and love on Wednesday.

"The dream is not fully realized," he said on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial for the March on Washington's 50th anniversary. "So we must redouble and quadruple our efforts."

King, who was 5 years old at the time of the 1963 march, recalled his father's legacy and said he was "blessed" to bring his own daughter to the commemoration to appreciate the moment in history and "continue to participate."

He cited his father's challenge to "be a better nation" and recalled his father's lessons of love, particularly an "unselfish" love from the Greek work "agape," and forgiveness that he said is needed "not just in our nation but throughout the world."

Even while emphasizing love and forgiveness, King called attendees to action.

"Sometimes we must take positions that are neither safe nor popular," he said. But we must take those positions because our conscience tells us they're right."

We’ve got a lot of work to do," he said. "None of us should be in any ways tired. We’ve come too far from where we’ve started."

Ruth Tam is a writer based in Washington, D.C. Follow her on Twitter: @ruthetam.

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