Monday, January 21, 2013

"The best is yet to come," says Martin Luther King ceremony speaker

Joyce Glaise remembers Martin Luther King Jr. coming to Danville, Virginia, to help promote the civil rights movement when she was a young girl. Because of segregation, he was not even allowed to stay in a hotel, Glaise told an audience at Randolph College’s Martin Luther King birthday memorial last Wednesday.

Joyce Glaise spoke at Randolph College's Martin
Luther King Jr. Celebration on January 16.
Glaise, an, educator, politician, and civil rights activist, contrasted that with her own experience. As she travels the nation to advocate for civil rights, she is able to stay in any hotel or eat in any restaurant she would like. The change is one symbol of the freedom for which King fought.

“We have accomplished a lot because of Martin Luther King,” Glaise said.

Glaise, who delivered the keynote address at the King memorial event, reminded her audience of Randolph students and community members that the accomplishments in the civil rights movement did not come easily, and the work is not done.

“My goal in life is to help this generation become leaders; to give you vision, courage, stamina, intelligence, wisdom, and intestinal fortitude to realize that the world needs you all,” Glaise said.

She encouraged her listeners to join civic organizations, seek service opportunities, and become educated. “Our greatest enemy is to be complacent and ignorant,” she said.

Voices, an a cappella group at Randolph, provides music for the service.
“We must push for high quality education for every child, a job for every American who wants a job, and a fair chance at prosperity for every individual in our nation,” Glaise said. “We must keep Martin Luther King’s dream alive for American posterity.”

Glaise said that it is up to each individual to create the future, and she expressed optimism in the country’s direction. “I know the best is yet to come,” she said.