MLK tribute preaches activism
This Monday, Martin Luther King Jr. Day served as a special occasion on campus to honor this important figure in our nation's history and growth. Events such as lectures and discussion groups were held. One activity, in Pickard at 7:00 p.m., featured Phil Hansen '64 who shared thoughts about the continuing fight for equality and his work towards this goal.
As a Bowdoin student, Hansen was privileged to hear King speak when he visited the campus and offered words of inspiration for all who would listen. Down the road Hansen met with King and later said he was "no doubt in the presence of greatness."
Through the speech Hansen made clear that King was more than just an advocate for equal rights between races, he made standing up an option for all.
Janelle Charles '06, a participant in the festivities that night, said, "I know that we all needed it because we are living in a time now when change is really needed; we forget that the fight is not over." The audience was reminded that when one battle is won there is another to be conquered.
Hansen said that gay avocation started to arise years after the Martin Luther King movement and that there will continually be these new fights for freedom. He said, "the gay rights movement is only part of the unfinished business of bringing dignity and hope to all Americans and indeed to all the people of the world-what will your generation do to finish the job?" Although attempts to make Monday special were taken, some students were upset that classes were still scheduled on the holiday. Abby Goldfarb '06 said, "It seems like it would have been fairly easy for the administration to postpone classes for just one more day in order to honor and acknowledge such an influential figure."
The other perspective, that school should go on, is also shared on campus as stated by Brian May '06 who said "having school off on Monday would not be used by anyone as a day to reflect and the many opportunities to bring students together on campus to discuss the events were an adequate tribute."
Regardless of the class controversy, the day was made special with help from Hansen's lecture, which reminded all who attended that although we have come far, there is always more to go.