From singing the song at funerals of murdered civil-rights workers (such as James Chaney), to serving as the theme of a speech (by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.), "we shall overcome" set the tone of the struggle for African-Americans - and all downtrodden people - to regain their civil rights.
This clip, of Dr. King's 1965 sermon delivered at Temple Israel of Hollywood, includes these words:
We shall overcome. We shall overcome. Deep in my heart I do believe we shall overcome. And I believe it because somehow the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice.
Truth forever on the scaffold,
Wrong forever on the throne.
Yet that scaffold sways the future,
And behind the dim unknown
Standeth God, within the shadow,
Keeping watch above His own.
Temple Israel of Hollywood first made the long-forgotten recording of Dr. King's speech available to the public in 2007. You can hear the entire sermon at NPR (National Public Radio).
Clip from the 1965 "We Shall Overcome" speech, by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., online courtesy Temple Israel of Hollywood and Trippin2Billie's Channel at YouTube.
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