Written by Jessica Shelburne
On Monday evening, a lecture was presented on campus to commemorate the 25-year anniversary of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. Dr. Fanchon Glover, Chief Diversity Officer for the College of William and Mary, spoke on behalf of King’s activism legacy and the fight for equal rights, embodying the college’s week-long theme of “Pushing Back to Push Forward.”
Main points of Glover’s lecture included leading others in a selfless manner, exercising patience while awaiting change, and understanding that the fight for freedom is everyone’s responsibility. King personified these characteristics in his years of peaceful, persistent activism for equality and integration. He emphasized during his career that the mission would not be one of quick resolution; rather, it was a lengthy process that would require continuous involvement.
“I may not get there with you, but we as a people will get to the promised land,” King famously stated.
Political polarization in the United States has been a problem since the nation’s establishment. Mass division between all kinds of affiliations makes it difficult to uphold America’s founding value of “equal justice under law.” Glover specifically highlighted this growing problem and urged audience members at the lecture that we must reach out to those who can help fulfill our mission and create an impact.
Striving for justice and accomplishing a goal are often arduous in completion, but Glover concluded her lecture with three critical elements that must be practiced when fighting for a cause: 1) Determine what the central issues are and what you want to achieve; 2) Build an alliance; 3) Create a vision and think realistically about how it will play out. Combining these components with preparation, determination, and consistency is reflective of King’s journey for equality and can be similarly employed today, as the fight for justice continues.