In recognition of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, President Barack Obama today issued a message that inspired service. Here is an excerpt of that message:
?Today we pay tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. We reflect on the lessons of his life. That extraordinary change begins when ordinary men and women are willing to stand up for the progress they seek. We draw strength from his unbending commitment to justice and his unwavering conviction in the moral force of non-violence.
And just as we celebrate the progress he helped to inspire, we recommit ourselves to our unfinished work: defending the dignity and equality of all people. That?s why today we come together in a national day of service. Because as Dr. King once said, ?Life?s most persistent and urgent questions is, ?What are you doing for others???
Today, Americans across our country are answering that question through their actions. They?re cleaning up parks, visiting hospitals, working at food banks and reading to children. They?re doing their part by honoring Dr. King and heeding his message to serve. To everyone out there volunteering today, thank you.?
The president and the first lady spent the day involved in several community projects including a visit to the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Washington.?
Martin Luther King, Jr. Day was signed into law in 1983 and first observed in 1986.