President Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama (C) and their daughter Malia (2nd-L)
President Obama playfully shushes himself as he greets the librarian
A paper-collage of first lady Michelle Obama hangs on a wall at the Browne Education Campus
President Obama participates in a community service project in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. at the Browne Education Campus in Washington
MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR., FEDERAL HOLIDAY, 2012
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BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
On a hot summer day nearly half a century ago, an African American preacher with no official title or rank gave voice to our Nation’s deepest aspirations, sharing his dream of an America that ensured the true equality of all our people. From the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. inspired a movement that would push our country toward a more perfect Union.
At a time when our Nation was sharply divided, Dr. King called on a generation of Americans to be “voices of reason, sanity, and understanding amid the voices of violence, hatred, and emotion.” His example stirred men and women of all backgrounds to become foot soldiers for justice, and his leadership gave them the courage to refuse the limitations of the day and fight for the prospect of tomorrow. Because these individuals showed the resilience to stand firm in the face of the fiercest resistance, we are the benefactors of an extraordinary legacy of progress.
Read the full proclamation here