In USA Today, Mark Potok of the Southern Poverty Law Center offers an assessment of where the country is today, 50 years after the March on Washington:
“We still have mountains to climb. The best estimates suggest there are a stunning quarter-million hate crimes in this country every year. Hate groups have been rising steadily over the last decade and now number more than 1,000. Our public discourse, including that of a shameful number of politicians, preachers and pundits, is poisoned with venomous hatreds and resurgent bigotry.”
To add to this discussion is the massacre at the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin in Oak Creek last August by the hand of a white supremacist. The murder of six Sikhs occurred 49 years after the bombing of the 16 Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama, also by white supremacists in 1963 to target African Americans as a response to the March on Washington just weeks before, killing four young African American girls.
Certainly, it is legitimate to say that progress in civil rights in this country has been made, however as we have seen in a cycle of violence perpetrated by the white supremacy movement, there is clearly much progress still to be discovered ahead.
Read more in USA Today.