On a hot summer day 59 years ago, hundreds of thousands of Americans descended on Washington to redeem America’s soul. They marched for jobs and the dignity of work. They marched for the freedom to vote or sit at a food counter. They marched to hear a preacher’s timeless dream: an America of opportunity and equal opportunity for all Americans.
As we face another inflection point in our nation’s history, I am proud that my administration has worked every day to bring us closer to that dream. On my very first day in office, I signed a historic executive order to make the promotion of racial justice and equity a priority across the federal government, as well as another executive order to anniversary of Bloody Sunday ordering my administration to expand access to the sacred right to vote. I signed the historic bipartisan Infrastructure Act, making historic investments in communities too often overlooked or underserved. When Congress failed to act, I signed an executive order to advance effective and accountable policing and improve both public safety and public trust.
But we have much more to do. Almost six decades later, this day reminds us of how far we’ve come, where we need to go, how far and how long the journey takes. And it reminds us that each of us must engage in the painstaking work of perfecting our union. As John Lewis, the youngest speaker that day, taught us: “Democracy is not a state. It is an act. »
For Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., for John Lewis, and for all who fought for a better America, we must carry on.