Today is Martin Luther King Day, and it has been 50 years since he gave the "I Have a Dream" speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. That speech and maybe a couple of marches are pretty much all he is remembered for any more by the majority of Americans, but that's not all that he did.
Over at The Daily Kos there's an excellent and thought-provoking piece called Most of You Have No Idea What Martin Luther King Actually Did that is well worth reading.
...Because at this point in our amnesiac national existence, my question pretty much reflects the national civic religion view of what Dr. King accomplished. He gave this great speech. Or some people say, "he marched." I was so angry at Mrs. Clinton during the primaries when she said that Dr. King marched, but it was LBJ who delivered the Civil Rights Act.Go ahead and read it all. It will likely change the way you think about Martin Luther King.
At this point, I would like to remind everyone exactly what Martin Luther King did, and it wasn't that he "marched" or gave a great speech.
My father told me with a sort of cold fury, "Dr. King ended the terror of living in the south."