This is the third part of our brand new Vocabulary Exercise Series meant for Civil Service Aspirants. If you haven’t practiced the previous one yet, click here to do so now.
Fill up the gaps with the suggested words given at the bottom. The words list has been scrambled, so be careful while choosing the right word.
When President Ronald Reagan signed the bill creating a federal holiday honoring the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., he warned that “traces of bigotry still mar” the country. This may seem the understatement of the 20th century; it would be an understatement today.
King spoke in his “I Have a Dream” speech of the “—————- summer of the Negro’s legitimate discontent.” This would not pass, he explained, “until there is an ——————autumn of freedom and equality.” He said this on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial — not far from where armed insurrectionists this month tried to ——————- an election decided, in part, by Black voters in Southern states who surmounted all manner of racist restrictions. He said it not far from the White House, where on the first day of June the president of the United States ordered the tear-gassing of peaceful protesters to clear his way for a photo op.
President Trump held up the same Bible from which King preached to send the opposite of his righteous message: ————governors to “dominate the streets” with troops to silence Black Americans, who, in their own summer of discontent, were crying out precisely against being dominated. The killing of innocent men such as George Floyd by police, the incarceration of so many more for minor offenses, the ————— neglect and disenfranchisement of communities of color even in an age when redlining and voter suppression are supposed to be illegal. These are the so-called traces of bigotry that continue to —————– our country.
King exhorted nonviolence until his violent death, but still he declared the year of his assassination that “a riot is the language of the unheard.” He asked: “What is it America has failed to hear? . . . It has failed to hear that the promises of freedom and justice have not been met. And it has failed to hear that large segments of White society are more concerned about —————- and the status quo than about justice and humanity.”
Has America finally heard? Hindsight brings convenient moral clarity, so an admiration for King has become practically a matter of public curriculum. Yet what looks unimpeachable now was unpopular then, whether his full-throated opposition to the Vietnam War or his insistence that there were two versions of this nation — one full with the “sunlight of opportunity” and the other with a “daily ugliness about it that transforms the —————-of hope into the fatigue of despair.”
The reality that the invigorating autumn of which King dreamed has not yet arrived is met with resistance today, too. It is easier to think about how far we’ve come than how far we’ve yet to go.
But without thinking about the great distance to our destination, we will never get there. The anger of a rent country, King said, turned his dream into a nightmare — yet still he would ask the Almighty to deliver him to “a few years in the second half of the 20th century” if he had his choice of all the ages: “I know, somehow, that only when it is dark enough can you see the stars. And I see God working . . . that men, in some strange way, are responding.
(Source: Washington Post)
Words to be inserted…….
1. Tranquility, 2. Systemic, 3. Overturn, 4. Sweltering, 5. Buoyancy, 6. Exhorting, 7. Invigorating, 8. Disfigure
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