Monique Fields reminds us of the original appeal for a holiday:
My earliest memory of celebrating King was in 1981. A group of us 10- and 11-year-olds were sitting in music class, where we sang or played instruments. When the music lesson was over, our teacher wheeled out the record player for a little history. If we behaved, she told us, we could listen to some music.
She pulled an album from behind her desk, the one with Stevie Wonder on the front wearing beads on his braids. She pulled the disc from its sleeve and carefully put the needle on the album. Stevie began to sing:
You know it doesn't make much sense
There ought to be a law against
Anyone who takes offense
At a day in your celebration
Amen. Happy birthday to ya, Dr. King.