Excerpts from Martin Luther King Jr.’s June 5, 1963, speech as reported in The Journal Gazette:
There come a time when a people get tired of injustice, oppression, exploitation. We want to be free.
The Negro no longer willing to accept racial segregation. It is sociological untenable, politically unsound and morally wrong. Segregation is the new form of slavery covered with the niceties of civilization.
The non-violent movement in the South has given blacks a new sense of dignity and self-respect after 300 years. He had come to feel that perhaps they were inferior.
The Negro today will suffer, sacrifice, even die to be free. Some say slow up. You’re moving too fast. We can’t. We love America too much. We’re through with gradualism, tokenism, see-how-far-you’ve-come-ism. Now is the time to get rid of segregation. Now is the time to make the American dream a reality.
We have learned to stand up against the evil system and still not hate in the process. We have discovered that love works miracles.
If you go to jail, you transform it from a jungle of shame to a haven of human dignity. We can say to our opponents we will match your capacity to endure suffering. We will wear you down with our capacity to suffer.
We will win our freedom and win you in the process. We will develop a divine discontent about discrimination in all its forms, even the subtle form in Indiana. We will speed the day when all men join hands and sing, free at last.