A day of respect and reflection

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It’s more than just a day.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day is a not a typical holiday. It’s a day when we all should reflect and be thankful for the man who, through is words and ideas, changed this nation like no other in modern history.
King, who was assassinated in April 1968, in Memphis, Tenn., left a legacy of peace, of respect, of love and of civil rights. His message of non-violence was, and still is today, a universal tool for achieving justice. He called nonviolence a “sword” for all those who struggle for justice, but he deemed it “a sword that heals, rather than a sword that wounds.”
As celebrations of Kings’ legacy occur throughout the nation this weekend, we encourage everyone to take part in two very important events in Valencia County. The first takes place today at the University of New Mexico-Valencia Campus in Tomé.
The celebration will begin at 1 p.m. in the Student-Community Center on campus. This year’s keynote speaker will be Col. James L. Cardoso, commander of the 58th Special Operations Wing at Kirtland Air Force Base.
Along with speeches about King and his life’s work, there will be performances by local youth groups and choir ensembles. Admission to the event is free, and you’ll even be able to partake in refreshments.
On Monday, the Belen Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Multicultural Commission will once again host a candlelight vigil at 6 p.m. at Anna Becker Park in Belen. This is the 19th year that the event will take place.
It will be a celebration shared by the community in song and dance and a renewed pledge of non-violence. We appreciate and the commission for all they do for the community, for their on-going message and for making sure that we, and future generations, never forget what Dr. King stood for.