Honoring a Legacy: State officials react to Martin Luther King Day

Local News

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – The third Monday of every January pays tribute to the life of clergyman, activist, and Civil Rights Movement leader, Martin Luther King Jr. 

Born on January 15, 1929, King played a crucial part in human rights activism. He is best known for the advancement of civil rights through nonviolent civil disobedience.

As Americans across the nation observe King’s legacy, officials across the state shared these thoughts.

“As we honor and celebrate the life of #MLK, do something for your community,” shares the Summit County Sheriff. “Do an act of #service for someone who looks different than you, believes or lives different than you. Dr.King was about making America better for all people. Make his #dream a reality.”

“This #MartinLutherKingJrDay, let us dedicate to ensure Dr.King’s legacy and cause endure by seeking out and lifting up those that are mistreated, ignored or forgotten,” shares the Herriman Police Department.

“As we celebrate #MLKday2021, remember what it means to serve your family, friends, neighbors and community,” writes the Unified Police Department. “Everyone can be great because anyone can serve.”

The Salt Lake City Fire Department says; “We hope you all can enjoy today and keep service, freedom and equality in your minds.”

“Today we recognize Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, jr., a man who is remembered for his work to bring hope to a nation during a tumultuous time in our history, and in doing so, dedicated his life in service to others,” shares the Provo Police Department.

“Each year, Americans answer this question by working together on Martin Luther King Jr. Day to serve their neighbors and communities. This Day of Service was created to honor Martin Luther King, Jr. and to “empower individuals, strengthen communities, bridge barriers, and create solutions to social problems.” By spending time working together to improve our communities, we can continue Dr. King’s legacy of working toward a brighter future,” Provo concludes.

The Salt Lake City Police Department shares; “As we look back on the legacy of a man with the courage to pursue his dream, may today serve as a reminder to keep moving forward. #MLKDay

Utah’s former long-time governor, Gary Herbert says; “As we celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day, it has never been more important to carry on his legacy. It is our responsibility to make his dream a reality. Let us not forget the fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of man.”

#MLKDay serves as a reminder of the profound life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. As we honor his legacy, may we recommit to following his unifying example of mutual respect & compassion towards others. May we all remember the common bonds that we share & come together as a nation,” writes Utah Congressman Chris Stewart.

In a longer statement, Utah State Senator Derek Kitchen says; “Today is the federal holiday that honors Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. You may primarily remember MLK as a civil rights leader, he also championed the cause of the poor and organized the Poor People’s Campaign to address issues of economic justice. Dr. King was also a fierce critic of U.S. foreign policy and the Vietnam War. If he were alive today, I can only imagine that climate change and environmental justice would be at the forefront of his effort.”

“As a tireless activist for racial justice, Dr. King endured being shot at, stabbed, beaten, followed and harassed by the government, arrested more than 30 times, subjected to unrelenting media scrutiny, outpourings of hate speech, and death threats. Racial disparities in policing, and police violence, reflect our past and are clearly reflected in our present. In a recent report from the Economic Policy Institute found no progress since 1968 in how Black people fare in comparison with whites when it comes to homeownership, unemployment, and incarceration.”

“They also found the wealth gap between whites and Blacks tripled between 1968 and today. While individual Black people have surely been successful in modern-day America, what does that mean if the Black community as a whole has not moved in half a century? It means his work must be our work, and it isn’t done. “We are now faced with the fact, my friends, that tomorrow is today… In this unfolding conundrum of life and history, there is such a thing as being too late.” Our only choice is to keep working.”

To pay tribute to MLK, Cache County Sheriff’s office shares a collection of notable Martin Luther King Jr. quotes;

“‘If you can’t fly then run if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward….Only in the darkness can you see the stars…If I cannot do great things, I can do small things in a great way.’ ~ Martin Luther King, Jr. (1.15.1929 – 4.4.1968)”

“Today we reflect and honor a great man, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. MLK is remembered for his dedication to change the world and the hope that he brought in a fearful time. ‘Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that,'” shares the Utah Highway Patrol.

“Today we reflect on the man and his powerful words to live by; ‘Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, what are we doing for others?’ – Martin Luther King Jr,” Quotes the Park City Police Department. “On this Martin Luther King Day, make an opportunity to be of service to others. ‘Everybody can be great because everybody can serve.'”

To honor MLK, the Cedar Police Department shares a quote from another civil rights leader, Mahatma Gandhi.

“Today, may we honor Dr, Martin Luther King Jr. Be the change you wish to see in the world – Gandhi.”

“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is ‘What are you doing for others?’ – Martin Luther King,” writes the Dixie State Police Department.

“King affirmed that it is possible to resist evil without resorting to violence and to oppose evil itself without opposing the people committing evil,” writes the St. George Police Department.”Today, may we honor Dr, Martin Luther King Jr. by embracing our differences, and finding strength in those differences. ‘Be the change you wish to see in the world – Gandhi'”

“Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.; ‘Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.’ May you spend part of the day in remembrance,” shares the South Salt Lake City Police Department.

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