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Keeping The Dream Alive

Editorial Board Writer (Harbor City International School) Originally published May 2005

When Joe Rogers, former Lieutenant Governor of Colorado and presenter of the Dream Alive Program, walked onto the stage at Harbor City International School, there was a large, enthusiastic round of applause. “What would he have to say?” were the thoughts running through all two hundred students at HCIS. We would soon find out.

Joe Rogers, a practicing attorney in Colorado, was in Duluth to present his Dream Alive Program on the UMD campus, sponsored by UMD’s Office of Economic Opportunity. Dream Alive is a program to help increase the understanding of the enormous contributions that Dr. Martin Luther King made to this country. Rogers explained to the Harbor City student body that racism is a complex issue and yet comes down to a very basic, individual level. For most, his speech was inspirational and challenged a deep level of thinking. In response to the speech, director of Harbor City, Chris Hazelton commented that there were many complex ideas swirling around in his head and that Mr. Rogers truly made him think.

Joe Rogers brought up many important things, but the most thought provoking question was,
“How will you treat my kids?” His quote from the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. followed this question. “Will you judge them by the color of their skin or the content of their character?” This was truly powerful.

Near the end of his speech, Mr. Rogers asked the audience for any comments or questions. There were many who participated. We all thank Joe Rogers for taking the time to come to our school and talking with all of us on such an important issue.

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