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[MARTIN LUTHER KING SPEECH]
We don't need to utter but three words to tell this nation what we are talking about.
One is the word 'ALL.' We don't want some of our rights; we want ALL of our rights.
The other word is 'HERE.' We want all of our rights and we want all of our rights HERE
in Alabama and Mississippi and South Carolina.
And then there's a third word, it is the word
'NOW.' We're not willing to wait a hundred years for our rights. No, what we are saying
to this nation is, that we want all of our rights, we want them here, and we want all
of them not next year, not next week, but we want them now, at this hour. This is what we are saying.
And so we've come here today to dramatize
a shameful condition. When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words
of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note.
This note was a promise that all men, yes, black men as well as white men, would
be guaranteed the unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of
racial justice. Now is the time... to make justice a reality for all of God's children.
But there is something that I must say to my people. In the process of gaining our rightful
place, we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for
freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred. I have a dream... that one day this
nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths
to be self-evident: that all men are created equal."
I have a dream that one day on the
red hills of Georgia, the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be
able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood. I have a dream...
that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their
skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream today.
I have a dream that one day, down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, one day right there in Alabama,
little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white
girls as sisters and brothers. I have a dream today.
And so let freedom ring from the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire.
Let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia.
Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Tennessee. Let freedom ring from every hill and molehill
of Mississippi, from every mountainside! Let freedom ring, and when this happens,
when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city,
we will be able to speed up that day when all of God's children, black men and white men,
Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the
words of the old *** spiritual, "Free at last! Free at last!
Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!" [CHEERING]