Statement from Miami-Dade County Commissioner Dennis C. Moss on the 50th Anniversary of the Civil Rights Act of 1964
(MIAMI, FL) - Freedom rides, the March on Washington, the murder of four little girls in the bombing of Birmingham’s 16th Street Baptist Church and the assassination of President John F. Kennedy was the backdrop as President Lyndon B. Johnson signed into law the most comprehensive civil rights package ever presented by any president of the United States. “The greatest tribute that we could pay to the late President John Fitzgerald Kennedy is to pass and pass soon, the civil rights legislation that he recommended…” said President Johnson. On July 2, 1964, with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and other civil rights leaders in attendance, the President signed The Civil Rights Act of 1964 into law declaring once and for all that discrimination for any reason on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin was illegal in the United States of America.
50 years later we commemorate the signing of this landmark legislation and honor the moral conviction and courage of activists who would make the American Dream a reality. “It may be true that the law cannot change the heart but it can restrain the heartless,” said Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in his 1963 speech at Western Michigan University. We must always remember that freedom was not given but gained through years of non-violent confrontation and visionary leadership. We will never forget your sacrifice.