From the Austin American-Statesman:
By Shirley Franklin
Special to the American-Statesman
As we ready ourselves to observe today’s holiday in honor of Martin Luther King Jr., I am reminded of how the lives of King. and President Lyndon B. Johnson were defined by their times and how both men seized that opportunity to further define the culture and politics of that era.
Their common fight against discrimination led from the streets of Selma to the Oval Office and the enactment of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The law prohibited discrimination, but I doubt that either man believed that would end the practice of racial inequality. In fact, Johnson said, “It is not enough just to open the gates of opportunity. All our citizens must have the ability to walk through those gates. This is the next and the more profound stage of the battle for civil rights. … To this end equal opportunity is essential, but not enough.”