Honoring MLK’s legacy through service

By Phyllis Hayes and Harrel Townsend, Jr.|
for the Argonne African American
Employee Resource Group


he national observance of King’s birth was the fruit of much struggle. For 17 years following his death, there was no national MLK Day. After a protracted political campaign, legislation passed in 1986 making January 15 a national holiday commemorating the life of Martin Luther King, Jr. Twenty-five years ago, the focus of the holiday shifted to service to others, in keeping with Dr. King’s legacy, and the national Martin Luther King Day of Service was begun.

On this day, we challenge ourselves to combine our respective strengths and passion to provide solutions to our most

pressing national concerns. Every member of the Argonne community can strive this goal for daily in their professional lives. Let us not take this day of service for granted, and remember the principle that Dr. King’s life modeled for us: Progress is neither comfortable nor guaranteed. While Argonne seeks science and engineering solutions to grand challenges for the nation and the world, our service and direct action can cut through cynicism and negativity to improve our communities.

If we wish never to grow numb to King’s tremendous sacrifice nor to the meaning of his life, then this holiday beckons us to search within ourselves. In Dr. King’s own words, “Every [one] must decide whether [they] will walk in the light of creative altruism or the darkness of destructive selfishness. Life’s most persistent and urgent question is: what are you doing for others?”

| Posted by | Focal Point

Celebrating MLK Day 2017

Dr. King’s words of hope continue to inspire today

By Harold Gaines, Argonne African American Black Club President

Today, on the observance of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, I would like to share with you an excerpt from Dr. King’s Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech from 1964. Dr. King shared his thoughts and vision with the international community at a tumultuous, expectant and hope-filled time in our nation’s history. His words and his peaceful dream for our nation continue to have relevance today. I hope his message inspires you as it continues to inspire me each day. » Continue reading “Celebrating MLK Day 2017”

Why We Honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. – From A Historical Perspective

Each year a fundamental question arises. Young people especially want to know, “Why do we honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.? The following is a brief analysis which can be duplicated and shared with schools, churches, organizations and the media.

Early in our country’s history, almost all black people came here as slaves. Because people in the South felt they needed cheap labor in building the land and because black people in Africa knew how to farm land like that in the South, they were taken from their homes and forced to come to America. Upon arriving in this country, they were sold to whites as slaves without rights or freedoms. » Continue reading “Why We Honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. – From A Historical Perspective”