By PolitickerNJ Staff | January 21st, 2013 - 11:04am
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BY BOB MENENDEZ Today, as we inaugurate Barack Obama into his second term as President and celebrate Martin Luther King  Day, let us remember January 1st, 1863, when Abraham Lincoln first issued the Emancipation Proclamation 150 years ago.  

Let us remember what it must have meant to every African-American then and what that moment of freedom and justice has come to represent in the long and troubled history of race relations in this nation.  Let us also remember that, 100 years after Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, Martin Luther King stood on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial and looked down the Mall at thousands of faces, black and white, men and women, young and old, standing together for the cause of freedom.

Now, 150 years to the month after Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation and just under 50 years after Martin Luther King stood on those steps in Lincoln’s "symbolic shadow," we are about to swear-in the first black President in our nation’s history to a second term.  We carry on the cause that every American always be a full-American, a full-citizen, judged not by the "the color of their skin but the content of their character" and that they be given all the rights and liberties afforded by the Constitution.

Abraham Lincoln freed African-Americans from the shameful shackles of slavery. Dr. King led them out of the lingering shadows of segregation and the oppressive yoke of Jim Crow toward a future of hope and a promise of freedom and equality.  Every year at this time we remember their lives and legacies all over again and are keenly aware that the task of freedom has fallen to us.  Indeed, it is up to us to make King’s dream a reality.  And on this day, let us carry forward on our righteous march towards equality and justice.

Bob Menendez is a United States Senator from New Jersey

Wake-Up Call

Morning Digest: July 30th

  With looming deadline on bail reform, Christie calls Legislature into special session TRENTON - Gov. Chris Christie is calling the legislature into special session Thursday to address recent bail reform legislation before a looming deadline next week, according to a letter from the governor’s office today. (Brush/PolitickerNJ)...

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Quote of the Day

quote of the day

"Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto, a Hudson County Democrat, is balking. He claimed Tuesday that members of his caucus are divided over the measure and that his house is in no real rush – besides, even if enacted this year, the reforms would not take effect until 2017, he said. And with the growing belief that Christie could skip town to run for president, some Democrats are not eager to give him another talking point for his résumé. Christie’s plans to stump for Republican candidates in New Hampshire later Thursday only fuel that suspicion." - columnist Charles Stile

- The Bergen Record

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