"When we let freedom ring,
when we let it ring
from every village and every hamlet,
from every state and every city,
we will be able to speed up that day
when all of God's children,
black men and white men,
Jews and Gentiles,
Protestants and Catholics,
will be able to join hands and
sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual,
'Free at last! Free at last!
Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!'"
Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
(1929-1968) US civil rights leader
Speech delivered on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C. on August 28, 1963.
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Reader comments about this quote:
It's a classic quote, but Rev. Archibald Carey, Jr. said it first in 1952 at the Republican National Convention.
 -- E Archer, NYC     
     -- Anonymous      
    To thank God Almighty for being free gets 5 stars. The burgeoning statist theocracy that Rev. King was embroiled with has bloomed in tyranny and gets a thumbs down for freedom lost. Beyond this sound bite, the whole speech carried a good message and was meaningful.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
    I still wonder if a person can be a man of god and a politition.
     -- cal, lewisville, tx     
    The so called "statist theocracy" that Mike refers to is perhaps the same one that stopped on the racist, nazi like parts of society that were and are always ready to stomp on our rights. You can call enforcng the law of the land "statist theocracy" if you will some others may choose to call it freedom.
     -- Waffler, Smith     
    I agree with Mike and add that the quote does identify the exact requirements that would establish freedom for all,
     -- Anon     
    We really ought to try letting freedom ring someday. You know, like being able to say any hate filled thing some fool might want to say with the only consequence being public derision, not government sanction. You know, like a private business being able to operate in any foolish fashion it might want to such as refusing to hire a particular group which may actually give it a competitive edge, without government coercion. Public ridicule stops racists and Nazi's more effectively than oppressive government action.
     -- Ken, Allyn, WA     
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