Yolanda King

“She lived with a lot of the trauma of our struggle. The movement was in her DNA.”

– Jesse Jackson

Yolanda King Quotes on Life


“I chose to dream and act on my dreams, following the example that my father taught. To live with this dream may be crazy, it may be foolish, but to live without it would be a nightmare.”

– Yolanda King


“We today have that same power if we but choose it, but choose it we must. What makes each of us unique is the individual choices we make. There will always be doubters, those who prefer inaction. I have heard it all, but I am still a believer in the dream. I choose to believe.”

– Yolanda King

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Yolanda King Quotes on Society

Yolanda King Quotes on Society & life

“My father had a magnificent dream, but it still is only a dream. It is easier to build monuments than make a better world. If we choose to honor him in words alone, it will be a grotesque farce.”

– Yolanda King, Remarks at interfaith breakfast with Mayor Harold Washington (16 January 1986)


“He created a spirit in this country that caused people to feel, at least for a little while, that there was some hope that things could be better. Needless to say, there was a percentage of the population that did not agree and thought things would be better if he were not around.”

– Yolanda King


“And we wonder why we have problems with homelessness in our country. We wonder why we’re floundering in education. We have got to take a look at reversing the priorities of this country.”

– Yolanda King


“There have been a number of gains, a number of, I think, token results. But far too many people, both black and white, are still locked out of the system and don’t have the opportunity to reach toward those goals that many of us take for granted.”

– Yolanda King, Speaking at UC Irvine (09 January 1985)


“I think basically the youth of today are just having so many problems and they are sort of confused…This is their method, of escaping (drugs)…Just like I sleep to escape my problems.”

– Yolanda King


“I cannot separate problems happening in South Africa with problems here. I don’t think you can put too much emphasis on something as brutal and overt as South Africa.”

– Yolanda King


“We as black people, we as women, we as humanity have not reached the promised land. We are still wandering around bumping into each other in the wilderness. The dream, that magnificent dream, pursued so fiercely by my father, is still only a dream.”

– Yolanda King, Speech delivered at Denise’s alma mater


“The Civil Rights Movement was not a mirage; it was not a documentary; it was not even a television special; it was live and in living color. It should not surprise us that it was a woman who sparked the movement. If Rosa Parks had not chosen to stand up that day in December 1955 by remaining seated on that bus in Montgomery, we would not be here today celebrating the life of Martin Luther King Jr. But that was the incident that propelled him into leadership and ultimately triggered the ending of segregation in the South. The doors of educational and employment opportunities were opened and blacks, Hispanics, and women of all races streamed in on an unprecedented basis.”

– Yolanda King


“We as Americans memorialize and honor symbols of heroic deeds done on the battlefields of war and violence. So should we honor those cosmic travelers who have given their lives for the struggle for peace and justice. We have thousands of monuments to men at war, at long last we have the opportunity to celebrate the life of a man of peace who was one of our own. This accomplishment is a moment of triumph—but not for Martin Luther King Jr., he wouldn’t have cared one way or other, his was a very self-effacing spirit.”

– Yolanda King


“He knew in 1968 that while this was a beautiful symbol of hope and possibility, it indeed was only the beginning. For after they joined hands what then were they going to do? Yes, he was dreaming again of marching on Washington, but this time the intent was to stay there not just for a day, not just for speeches and singing but to engage in a campaign of massive civil disobedience to try and stop, nonviolently, the functioning of the national government until the cause of the poor became this nation’s first priority—until all people were guaranteed a decent job, at a decent income, until we stopped the killing of Asians abroad in the Vietnam war and turned to attend to the very desperate needs of our people within our shores. That was the last dream. And if you understand that dream, if you understand that for the last six months of his life Martin Luther King Jr. was not only talking about but actively organizing native Americans, Hispanics, poor whites, blacks, people from all across this nation who had for so long been denied; if you realize how threatening that was, perhaps you will understand why the bullet came, perhaps where it came from.”

– Yolanda King

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Yolanda King Quotes about Life & Society