Columbia, SC (WLTX) - Wednesday the University of South Carolina celebrated the 50-year anniversary of the school being desegregated.
Former US Ambassador and Atlanta Mayor spoke with students and others about how America has changed.
"The university system of South Carolina is probably 35% black. That is inconceivable, 20 or 10 years ago," said Andrew Young.
As a man who stood side by side with civil rights activist Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Andrew Young has seen his share of discrimination in our country.
He says within the past 50 years our country has made major strides and that's something this generation often times forgets.
"Your lives are enormously better, not because you are young, good looking and work hard, but because there were people who studied, who died, marched, who gave their lives to put an end to the barriers that normally would have kept people like us (African Americans ) out of the economy and politics."
Last weekend Young watched the football game between the Gamecocks and Georgia Bulldogs.
He says even looking at sports shows how far our country has come.
"I looked at the cheerleaders and the coaches and the players and people where working together, that didn't use to happen. That needs to happen in business, in churches, it needs to happen in our universities even more than it does now."
Young says the civil rights movement changed more than just issues Americans faced but issues outside of the country too.
"Because of what happened in Birmingham movements started in South Africa, movements started behind the iron curtain, when the Berlin Wall came down it's no accident that they were singing we shall overcome."
He believes the Military and sports have led the movement of change in our country.
Young says once religion, business and academia catch up, that's when true change will happen.
"Let's get over it and let's get on with the job of making the world work for everybody."