Gershon Hepner

The Pillars of Martin Luther King’s American Dream

Martin Luther King’s great speeches had three sources.

The Bible, and the Declaration of Independence, two great pillars

of the third one, the American dream, cut short by evil forces

which inspire all attempts to undermine that dream, American killers,

although it was a Jewish force that makes King to me more than merely special:

his extremely close relationship with Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel.

In “The Content of His Character,” NYT, 5/28/23, Dwight Garner, reviewing King:  A Life by Jonathan Eig, writes:

He lingers on the cadences of King’s speeches, explaining how he learned to work his audience, to stretch and rouse them at the same time. He had the best material on his side, and he knew it. Eig puts it this way: “Here was a man building a reform movement on the most American of pillars: the Bible, the Declaration of Independence, the American dream.”

About the Author
Gershon Hepner is a poet who has written over 25,000 poems on subjects ranging from music to literature, politics to Torah. He grew up in England and moved to Los Angeles in 1976. Using his varied interests and experiences, he has authored dozens of papers in medical and academic journals, and authored "Legal Friction: Law, Narrative, and Identity Politics in Biblical Israel." He can be reached at