The Martin Luther King, Jr. National Memorial Monument is being officially dedicated this coming Sunday as astonished historians and a new generation of admirers make their trek across the country to Washington DC’s National Mall to witness the dedication ceremony celebrating the slain civil rights leader that has been 25 years in the making. President Obama is slated to be the keynote speaker at the event.
The monument is built on four acres next to the Jefferson Memorial’s Tidal Basin. It is the first monument on the Mall honoring an African-American and only the second in history alongside Booker T. Washington. It is also the only national monument in Washington that does not memorialize a president or a war. National monuments are designated as living memorials of change, progress and significant losses in our nation’s history.
Visitors can walk through a symbolic “mountain of despair” that the sculptorLei Yixin, an artist from the People’s Republic of China said represented the civil rights struggle of African Americans. The front of yet another stone which boasts the 30-foot sculpture of Dr. King, is described by the sculptor as the “stone of hope”.
Incidentally this past Monday, one day after the unofficial opening of Dr. King’s monument, an earthquake registering 5.8 on the Richter scale pulsed through the Washington DC area causing no damage to the monument. The Washington area is also preparing for Hurricane Irene which is predicted to blow through the area on the day of the official dedication ceremony.
We shall not be moved.