Standing at 5’ 6 his voice thundered through crowds to inspire not only a nation but the whole world and awaken a yearning for freedom and justice. With true oratorical brilliance, Nobel Peace Prize winner Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. gave voice to the dreams of everyone regardless of gender, race or social standing revolutionizing a generation and becoming a major force behind one of the greatest movements ever recorded.
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Dr. King preached dignity, self respect and equality on every level. Also note that Mahatma Gandhi who was the inspiration behind Dr. King’s non-violent protests was also a man of modest stature standing at 5’3.
Coretta Scott Was Initially Unimpressed With King's Modest Stature | Source: Wiki Commons
Coretta Scott unfortunately admitted to having been "unimpressed" with Dr. King's height initially (heightism is not a new phenomena). In her own words, “He became increasingly better looking as he talked so strongly and convincingly. He seemed to know exactly where he was going and how he was going to get there". It would not be long until she would seriously consider and later accept his marriage proposal.
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Coretta Scott King would later become an influential woman in the fight for civil rights in her own right, picking up the torch following her husband’s untimely death all the way until her own. This is a vital lesson to us all when it comes to dating - Don’t spend time apologizing for other people’s heightist perceptions. Keep it moving. For a woman with true perception and intelligence, at the end of the day, it is the vision, goals and content of character that matter most in a partner. Not height.
Dr. King Stands With His Powerful Contemporaries | Source: Wiki Commons
When remembering his personal interactions with Dr. King, former U.N. Ambassador and former Atlanta mayor Andrew Young recalled that at 5’ 6, MLK was at times self-conscious about his height reportedly "not comfortable with tall people looking 'down' on him". Evidently however, that did not deter him. It would be up to anyone's guess why such a powerful figure would feel that way during such tumultuous times (that was sarcasm by the way - heightism was and still is the cause).
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Today in almost every major city you visit, you might find yourself walking down one of the over several hundred Martin Luther King Jr. streets in the country - not to mention the hundreds of institutions, libraries, schools and facilities named after the civil rights leader. Similarly you could see one of the many statues left in his honor and notice the awe with which all people look to the national hero.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Speaks At A Rally | Source: Wiki Commons
You could also visit the new national monument on the National Mall in Washington D.C. and watch from a distance as some 1.5 million people all of sizes visit annually just to walk in the shadow of such a remarkable man. His words ring true today as they did 50 years ago, "Be true to yourself’. Former Mayor Young further remarked at the unveiling at the unveiling of the new national monument in 2011 that, "Martin Luther King was just 5'6, but now at 30 feet tall, he now gets to look down at everybody".
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