Quotations of Martin Luther King, Jr

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is famous for his courageous leadership in the fight to end racial segregation in mid 20th century America. He advocated civil disobedience, a nonviolent approach to defying the legal system that upheld segregation.

Dr. King is also remembered for his powerful sermons and speeches. This worksheet features a few examples of his words. The main source of these quotations is brainyquote.com.

Match the quote by Martin Luther King, Jr. with the comment or interpretation below. The first one has been matched for you.

The words of Martin Luther King, Jr.:


1. “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”


2. “I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.”


3. “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. ”


4. “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”


5. “Life's most urgent question is: what are you doing for others?”


6. “Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”


7. “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”


A. People should behave in a way that makes life better for their fellow humans.


B. This was clearly Dr. King's belief as he dedicated his life to speaking out against injustice.


C. In this analogy, darkness is to hate as light is to love.


D. Hating others hurts the hater.


E. Believing that one is right is no excuse for being in the wrong.


F. If you agree with this quote, you cannot feel completely safe when others are treated unfairly.


G. Behavior, not skin color, tells us what we should think of a person.


See if you can answer the following questions about the meanings of quotations.


1. “A teacher is someone who talks in our sleep.”    Alfred E. Neuman

The point of this quote is that _______.

A. students dream about going to school
B. students don't pay attention in school
C. homework is relaxing
D. teachers shouldn't disturb students' naps

2. “A person who won't read has no advantage over one who can't read.”    Mark Twain

Twain is saying that _______.

A. reading isn't necessary
B. reading ability is nothing if it isn't used
C. he is a great author
D. you should learn how to read

3. “Too bad SpongeBob isn't here to enjoy SpongeBob not being here.”    Squidward

Squidward actually means that _______.

A. he misses SpongeBob
B. he likes SpongeBob's visits
C. he enjoys SpongBob's absense
D. he enjoys television

4. “Continuous effort - not strength or intelligence - is the key to unlocking our potential.”    Winston Churchill

Churchill really meant this because he was not a _______.

A. smoker
B. leader
C. farmer
D. quitter

5. “An ounce of practice is worth more than tons of preaching.”    Mohandas Gandhi

Which statement or quote is similar to the above quote?

A. The pen is mightier than the sword.”   Edward Bulwer-Lytton
B. Actions speak louder than words.
C. Practice makes perfect.
D. “Courtesy is as much a mark of a gentleman as courage.”   Theodore Roosevelt



See if you can answer the following questions about the meanings of quotations.


1. “Acting is all about honesty. If you can fake that, you've got it made.”    George Burns

Burns was  _______.

A. saying that he is honest
B. angry about what  actors do
C. a fake
D. making a joke

2. “If passion drives you, let reason hold the reins.”    Benjamin Franklin

This means that _______.

A. you should think before you act
B. avoid fast horses
C. do whatever you feel like doing
D. let someone else drive

3. “You must do the things you think you cannot do.”    Eleanor Roosevelt

This means that  _______.

A. we should fool ourselves
B. we are confused
C. we can't do all that much
D. we're capable of doing more than we realize

4. “Government's first duty is to protect the people, not run their lives.”    Ronald Reagan

Reagan wanted to _______.

A. have government solve all our problems
B. limit the power of government
C. shrink the military
D. eliminate all governments

5. “You aren't learning anything when you're talking.”    Lyndon B. Johnson

This means that it's important to _______.

A. talk louder
B. teach
C. help others.
D. listen to others

Sports Quotes

Complete each quote by writing the appropriate sport in the blank. Each sport below is only used once . Look for clues in the quotes to help you choose correctly.

baseball    basketball    football    golf    hockey    skiing    soccer    tennis


1. “____________________ is a good walk spoiled.”    Mark Twain


2. “I let my racket do the talking. That's what I am all about, really. I just go out and win 
____________________ matches.”    Pete Sampras


3. “Sure, luck means a lot in ____________________. Not having a good quarterback is bad luck.”    Don Shula


4. “If God had wanted man to play ____________________, he wouldn't have given us arms.”    Mike Ditka

5. “It was a fun ride. I've enjoyed my time on the ice and I've enjoyed more and more people getting interested in the game of ____________________.”    Ron Francis

6. “____________________ combines outdoor fun with knocking down trees with your face.”    Dave Barry

7. “Little League ____________________ is a very good thing because it keeps the parents off the streets.”    Yogi Berra

8. “If all I'm remembered for is being a good ____________________ player, then I've done a bad job with the rest of my life.”    Isiah Thomas


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