Martin Luther King Jr. had a dream, a dream in which racism would not have its place in our society. A dream where a human being would not be judged by the “color of their skin but rather by the content of their character.” 55 years later, fellow compatriots still find it hard to live together in harmony and hate is at its peak.
In honor of MLK’s legacy, Saint Leo University welcomed musical artist Ove Salcedo, commonly known as Oveous, to the campus Jan. 16. Oveous has been traveling, performing in, and visiting famous cities across the globe. After completing a three days’ trip, the guest speaker found himself at Saint Leo giving the students a reality check. Through the use of poems and life experiences, Oveous spoke his truth.
In his poem to the people of the world, Oveous lashes out against the flawed system in the form of football metaphors.
“I am gonna take a knee against your nonsense,” he said.
Oveous called out the racism that fumbles from hand to hand and reminds the prejudiced that he will take a knee until they “touchdown” on what truly matters: the right to be equal.
Oveous followed that piece with a poem that he wrote for his mother, “Dulce de leche.” The speaker wanted to express through words the love and admiration that he has for his mother. Dulce, or “sweet” in Spanish, is a metaphor for her beauty and leche, “milk,” is a metaphor for her strength. In the poem, Oveous berated the male population against the machismo that they exhibit. He talked about the importance of women and that they should be respected.
He concluded the segment by stating that “This is a man’s world, but it’s always gonna be under a woman’s supervision.”
Oveous continued by exposing one of the flaws of this generation, which is technology. Everyone is addicted to their screen, and the speaker implied that the reason that this generation flees away from books is that they are too real and that they prefer the virtual lives that they live.
Oveous then spoke about his parents, who had separated and culminated his relationship with his father into a poem. His admiration for his father is omnipresent; his father is his hero, the man who is always in the streets, protecting his family. The tone then grew somber when the speaker proceeded to talk about the death of his only brother and how this pushed him to speak publicly.
Oveous wrapped up the lecture by reading one of the most important poems, “A Letter to My Heroes.” In the poem, the artist thanks a plethora of individuals who have influenced him. He thanks Oprah Winfrey and assures her that she’s got his vote if she runs for the presidency. He also tipped a metaphorical hat to Michael Jackson, Ellen DeGeneres, Kurt Cobain for being the best artist ever, Bob Marley, his brother, his mother, and his father; the list goes on and on.
Martin Luther King’s message was that all of us are brothers and sisters. The only fact that should matter is that everyone is part of the human race. Everyone has the same needs, has the same wants and, to quote Oveous, “We all poop.”