MLK Day Assembly
This year’s Martin Luther King Jr. Day assembly was begun with Dr. King’s famous Washington D.C. mall speech from August 28, 1968. Also known as the “I have a Dream Speech,” cadets listened intently to his ideas, old ideas, still applicable in a new world.
After all were seated, Captain Cedric Wright gave opening remarks concerning the occasion. Following this, Cadet Stephano Betti gave a dramatic reading of Langston Hugh’s poem, “A Poem from Mother to Son,” and Chaplain Magnus Walker gave a stirring benediction. LTC Deborah Hartley then introduced the main speaker of the assembly, Pastor Pierre Salmon, a community Pastor in Enoree, SC. Pastor Salmon, LTC Hartley explained, works at New Prospect Baptist Church in Enoree but has worked around the world in such places as Brazil, Jamaica and Israel.
In his speech, Pastor Salmon told the cadets that, while life is full of challenges, ups and downs, and while we cannot control the cards we are dealt, “we can control how we play those cards.”
He explained how, even when we appear to be standing still, we are actually in constant motion. He added that while we are moving in the right direction, Dr. King’s dream has still not been fulfilled. “There is still injustice in the United States, but it’s not a black and white thing. It’s a people thing,” he said
Pastor Salmon gave the cadets much advice in his presentation. He told them to endure and to persevere. He also told them to keep learning and, whatever they do, to keep dreaming.
Cadet Randy Yang followed Pastor Salmon with a reading of the poem “Life’s Tragedy” by Paul Lawrence Dunbar, a work describing the hardships of racial discrimination faced by the poet. Following this, Captain Wright made closing remarks.