The Work Continues
Dr. Martin Luther King’s daughter, Dr. Bernice King, is carrying on her father’s work.
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Dr. Bernice King speaks during a 2018 visit to the National Civil Rights Museum.
In 1980, when Bernice King was 17, she gave a speech to the United Nations. Addressing representatives from countries around the world, King called for an end to apartheid, a system of racial segregation that was the law in South Africa until 1994. Today, Bernice King continues to promote equality, justice, and peace—all values that were important to her famous father, Martin Luther King, Jr.
Bernice King was a small child in 1968, when her father was killed. But both of her parents passed down their principles to Bernice and her sister and brothers. Martin Luther King, Jr., believed in using nonviolent methods, such as education and peaceful demonstrations, to address racism and poverty. His wife, Coretta Scott King, was also a passionate fighter for equality.
In 1968, Coretta Scott King founded the Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change, also called the King Center, to continue her husband’s work. Today, Bernice King is the head of the King Center, as well as a lawyer and a public speaker. Her aim is to provide people with tools they can use to bring about social change, peacefully.
Like her father, Bernice King believes that education is one key. Love is another. In 2022, she co-authored a children’s book called It Starts With Me. The book’s message is that each person can make the choice to be loving and compassionate to others.
Bernice King believes that love isn’t just about caring for the people you know. It’s about having compassion for all of humanity.
“Now more than ever, I believe that my father would encourage humanity to join together in love,” King wrote in The Atlantic in 2021. “Love…is a powerful, moral force on the side of justice.”