Though our nation has made tremendous strides toward equality in education, housing and equal treatment of all people, we still have a long way to go.
New York City’s public school system remains one of the most racially segregated in the country. The achievement gap has never been closed, and students are still attending schools that lack the proper resources to succeed.
New York also remains one of the most unequal cities in terms of income inequality. Amid a growing affordable housing crisis, more than 60,000 homeless people live in shelters, with no end in sight.
And despite strong protections for women, LGBTQ communities and immigrants here in the city, marginalized groups continue to deal with exclusion and harassment. From the proposed border wall to hate crimes against transgender individuals, these communities are facing attacks across the country.
That’s why movements like Me Too, Black Lives Matter and the modern LGBTQ civil rights movement are so important. They shed light on the glaring inequalities that persist today, and how they manifest in our everyday lives.
All of these movements learned from the Dr. King and Civil Rights Movement. They learned that it takes nonviolence and militance, activism and political action, and the building of broad coalitions to achieve victories.
As we reflect on how Dr. King has transformed our country into what it is today, we should also pay attention to the current struggles for equality.
As MLK once said, “the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” The best way to keep his legacy alive is to keep fighting for justice.