UPDATE: Apparently Hansen wasn’t done yet. Here’s his op-ed published Tuesday in the New York Times.
Wednesday marks the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington and Martin Luther King, Jr.’s transcendent “I Have a Dream” speech.
As the occasion approaches, media outlets across the country are striving to place the historic day in context. For help, some are turning to islander and state legislator Drew Hansen.
Few people are as intimately familiar with King’s speech as Hansen. The Bainbridge lawyer and 23rd District representative is also author of “The Dream: Martin Luther King, Jr., and the Speech that Inspired a Nation,” a study of the meaning, context and legacy of the famous oration.
“The Dream” was published by Harper Collins in 2003 coincide 40th anniversary of the March on Washington. Hansen became a popular guest speaker after the book’s release, giving numerous talks on King and the speech over the last decade. As the 50-year anniversary of the march approaches, he is once again sharing his insights.
In a USA Today story published earlier this month, Hansen noted the “Dream” speech slid toward obscurity in the years after it was delivered. The speech returned to prominence only after King’s death in 1968, and became – “one of those things we look to when we want to know what America means,” Hansen told the paper. (more…)