|America needed Martin Luther King, Junior.
That's according to John Hunigan, the keynote speaker at the city's annual Martin Luther King Day Breakfast Monday, held this year at Bethel Baptist Church in Galesburg.
Hunigan, employed by the Stone-Hayes Center and is the chairperson of Galesburg's Human Relations Commission, talked about the stroke he had five years ago while a resident of Los Angeles.
Walking with a cane one night following the stroke, Hunigan tried to walk to a convenience store to get a drink when he had trouble, causing what he said were some 20 somethings to point and laugh, and describe him as looking like he was drunk.
Hunigan says that's a form of discrimination.
"Like the incident that happened to me, people with disabilities are often judged by their appearance instead of content of their character and what I'm saying should sound familiar to what Martin said. See the Civil Rights Movement there were numerous hero's who gave their lives for the struggle of equality. As a lot of American's had Martin the disability community had pioneers just as...Lester Pritchard."
Hunigan says the disabled are often very productive, and never bad for business, so they should be considered for work the same as anyone else.
Hunigan says people should be prepared to work toward solutions to discrimination not just today, but also tomorrow and the days after.
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(Hands were held Monday during the singing of "We Shall Overcome." WGIL News Story and Photos by Will Stevenson.)