The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s Washington D.C. memorial was revealed on Monday and now, the Civil Rights leader stands among other American heroes like Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson and George Washington.
The 30-foot memorial was designed by acclaimed Chinese sculptor Lei Yixin, for a cost of about $120 million.
The idea was spawned after a line from Dr. King’s “Dream” speech: “With this faith we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope.”
Hence, the “Stone of Hope” was created to honor MLK.
This Sunday will be the 48th Anniversary of the date that MLK delivered his “I Have a Dream Speech” on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in 1963 at the National Mall during the March on Washington.
As for the sculptor, Lei Yixin, he has received an unfair amount of criticism, mainly because some believe a Chinese artist shouldn’t have been chosen to sculpt the statue of the most prominent Civil Right leaders in American history.
However, Martin Luther King Jr. wasn’t about division and discrimination. Another reason why many feel Lei shouldn’t have sculpted the statue for MLK is because he made statues for Mao Zedong, the Chinese Communist revolutionary and leader of the People’s Republic of China.
So should Lei’s former work bar him from creating other statues?
Let’s take a look at some of Lei’s other creations.