Black History Month: I have a Dream

James Holly, M.D.

Several years ago, as I stood on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C., I recalled the haunting words of Dion Dimucci’s 1968 song eulogizing Abraham Lincoln, John and Bobby Kennedy, and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. This simple song stirs a mournful longing and lament for these fallen leaders. The words to “Abraham, Martin and John” have been resonating through my soul as we celebrate Black History Month:

Has anybody here seen my old friend Abraham? Can you tell me where he’s gone? He freed a lot of people, But it seems the good they die young. You know, I just looked around and he’s gone.

Anybody here seen my old friend John? Can you tell me where he’s gone? He freed a lot of people, But it seems the good they die young. I just looked around and he’s gone.

Anybody here seen my old friend Martin? Can you tell me where he’s gone? He freed a lot of people, But it seems the good they die young. I just looked ‘round and he’s gone.

Didn’t you love the things that they stood for? Didn’t they try to find some good for you and me? And we’ll be free Some day soon, and it’s a-gonna be one day ...

Anybody here seen my old friend Bobby? Can you tell me where he’s gone? I thought I saw him walkin’ up over the hill, With Abraham, Martin and John.

You do not have to be a political liberal to share the lament of this classic. I hear the refrain: “Didn’t you love the things they stood for?” I did and I do.

One man wrote the following words about Dr. King; they could be our words, but he penned them more eloquently:

“This astounding man, whose name is inextricably woven in the fabric of history with the cause of civil rights, would have been celebrating his 89th birthday if he were alive today. He was born at noon at the home of his parents on Jan. 15, 1929, in Atlanta. He was an exceptional and intellectually gifted child who entered Morehouse College at the tender age of fifteen where he received a B.A. in sociology. He ultimately earned his Ph.D. in theology from Boston University in 1955 and was subsequently awarded twenty honorary doctorates from colleges and universities in the United States and several foreign countries. In 1964, at age thirty-five, he became the youngest man, the second American, and the third black man to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

To read the full "Your Life, Your Health with James Holly, M.D." from the February 15th issue of The Examiner, as well as the full issue, subscribe and read online: http://theexaminer.com/print-version

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Dr. James L. Holly is CEO of Southeast Texas Medical Associates, LLP (SETMA) in Beaumont.

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