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The Promised Land: Different Takes on the Legacy of Martin Luther King

Saturday, 1/17 at 4pm on 93.9FM and Monday, 1/19 at 3pm on AM820

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Martin Luther King had a dream. "I've seen the promised land," he said. "I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the promised land."

It's more that four decades since he spoke those words—words that still ring in our ears, especially as we celebrate what would have been Dr. King's 80th birthday.

During a one-hour special, The Promised Land: Different Takes on the Legacy of Martin Luther King, activist, environmentalist, humanitarian Majora Carter gauges the reach of King’s influence. How far have we come? What has been the impact on our kids? On our communities?

You'll meet a minister who suggests that King's legacy holds no meaning for today's children, and a composer whose newly commissioned work "The Homecoming: In Memoriam Martin Luther King" had its premier in September 2008, sung by the San Francisco-based chorus Chanticleer. Paul Mooney, whose pen is behind many of the top African-American comedians, will help sort out how humor fits into discussions of King.

Current voices in civil rights will weigh in on the subject. Author and activist Dr. Vincent Harding recalls his association with Dr. King. Dolores Huerta talks about continuing the efforts begun by Cesar Chavez and what it was like to work and live in his shadow. And you're introduced to Judy Bonds, a rural white woman fighting mountaintop mining and land desecration in her community. There was a time when she'd never heard of King, yet her battle echoes his in surprising and unexpected ways.

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