Martin Luther King Jr. Day falls on January 15, 2024. Every year on MLK Day, people share motivational and inspirational quotes, along with funny memes, to celebrate and honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and his role in the Civil Rights movement. Dr. King’s powerful words are still so relevant today, 60 years after he first spoke them, so it comes as no surprise that they are shared often and sometimes not always correct. There are also some funny memes to point out how he is often misquoted. Check out this list of Martin Luther King Jr. motivational quotes and memes.
Martin Luther King Jr. Motivational Quotes & Memes 2024
The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.
I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality. This is why right, temporarily defeated, is stronger than evil triumphant. (Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech, 1964)
Intelligence plus character—that is the goal of true education. (“The Purpose of Education,” 1947)
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.
We know through painful experience that freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor, it must be demanded by the oppressed. (“Letter from a Birmingham Jail,” 1963)
We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.
Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?
Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle.
Faith is taking the first step even when you can’t see the whole staircase.
You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You don’t have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.
We’ve got some difficult days ahead. But it really doesn’t matter with me now because I’ve been to the mountaintop… I’ve looked over and I’ve seen the promised land. 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. (“I’ve Been to the Mountaintop,” 1968)
We will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. (“I Have a Dream,” 1963)
The beauty of genuine brotherhood and peace is more precious than diamonds or silver or gold. (Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech, 1964)
Whatever your life’s work is, do it well. A man should do his job so well that the living, the dead, and the unborn could do it no better.
True peace is not merely the absence of tension; it is the presence of justice. (Stride Toward Freedom, 1957)
Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.
We shall overcome because the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice. (Washington National Cathedral, 1968)
Make a career of humanity. Commit yourself to the noble struggle for equal rights. You will make a better person of yourself, a greater nation of your country and a finer world to live in. (March for Integrated Schools, 1959)
Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into a friend.
A genuine leader is not a searcher for consensus but a molder of consensus. (The Domestic Impact of the War in Vietnam, 1967)
Forgiveness is not an occasional act. It is a permanent attitude. (“Love in Action,” 1962)
So even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream. I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.
The hottest place in hell is reserved for those who remain neutral in times of great moral conflict.
If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward. (Address at Spelman College, 1960)
Love is the greatest force in the universe. It is the heartbeat of the moral cosmos. He who loves is a participant in the being of God. (From a handwritten letter, mid-1960s)
The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically.
It is not enough to say ‘We must not wage war.’ It is necessary to love peace and sacrifice for it. We must concentrate not merely on the negative expulsion of war, but the positive affirmation of peace. (Anti-War Conference, 1967)
The past is prophetic in that it asserts loudly that wars are poor chisels for carving out peaceful tomorrows.
Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity. (Strength to Love, 1963)
All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence. (“All Labor Has Dignity,” 1968)
If I cannot do great things, I can do small things in a great way.
The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright day of justice emerges. (“I Have a Dream,” 1963)
Every nation must now develop an overriding loyalty to mankind as a whole in order to preserve the best in their individual societies. (New York City, 1967)
Shallow understanding from people of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will.