JUNE 23, 1963
Martin Luther King Jr. led an enormous march, joined by as many as 125,000, in Detroit. The words he shared in his speech were much like those within the “I Have a Dream” speech he delivered two months later from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C.
He mentioned his friend, Medgar Evers, who had been assassinated just 11 days earlier, and Emmett Till, whose brutal killing helped propel the trendy civil rights movement.
“Before the victory is won, some, like Medgar Evers, could have to face physical death. But when physical death is the worth that some must pay to free their children and their white brothers from an everlasting psychological death, then nothing might be more redemptive,” he said. “I even have a dream that there shall be a day that we’ll now not face the atrocities that Emmett Till needed to face or Medgar Evers needed to face, that each one men can live with dignity.”