Readers write, Aug. 29

MARCH ON WASHINGTON

Why King’s ‘Dream’ still moves its hearers

Having taught speech communication at the university level, and having spent decades as a professional speaker and speech coach, I welcome the widespread celebration of Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech.

One major reason for the speech’s lasting impact: King’s life was consistent with his rhetoric. Surrounded by threats, bullied by hecklers and racist law officers, he endured arrest, followed Gandhi’s example of nonviolence, and ultimately gave his life in the advancement of civil rights.

The speech still resonates because of King’s vivid illustrations. We “have come to our nation’s capital to cash a check,” he said. Yet, the nation’s response to promises of justice was marked “insufficient funds.” Even so, he said, “we refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt.”

King spoke with stirring emotion, which emerged naturally from his intense belief in his message. In the magic of the moment, he spoke directly from his heart.

Commemorating King’s history-changing speech is more than justifiable; it is morally imperative.

BILL LAMPTON, GAINESVILLE

ATLANTA WELCOME

Van driver’s honesty speaks well for city

Having never visited Atlanta, I decided this was the year to do so. While there recently, I secured a tour company to guide us through this very interesting city. The driver also took us to a Braves game, and to another venue. At one point, I discovered my wallet was missing, panicked, and called the driver — who returned my call. To my relief, she’d found my wallet in her van.

In the wallet were two credit cards; my drivers license; room key, and a good amount of cash. Had this driver kept the wallet, I would never have known. I could have dropped it anywhere.

That incident certainly left me with an outstanding impression of Atlanta. Actually, everyone we encountered in your city was exceptionally nice and friendly.

LORETTA CALHOUN, GREENSBORO, N.C.

POLITICS

Male legislators don’t regard women’s needs

As a woman in her late 80s, I cannot believe how little regard the largely male legislation of our nation (and our states) has for women and their well-bring.

Although none of these men will ever become pregnant, too many of them want to outlaw abortions, contraceptives and other health-related procedures for women.

No woman is forced to have an abortion, so why restrict them for those women who have reasons to want or need one? And why spread falsehoods about the effects of abortions? Women do have brains and can use them to make decisions about their health based on facts, not distortions.

JANET CUKOR, ATLANTA

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