Thousands gathered Sunday at St. Michael the Archangel church on the city's South Side to celebrate and pay tribute to the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and also make a call for economic and racial equality. The two-hour-long rally saw dozens of speeches from community organizers, local politicians and others who tied Dr. King's legacy to today's struggles for economic justice.
Dr. King had a dream and it had a fundamental economic component to it, said Rev. Dwight Gardner, pastor of Trinity Baptist Church. During his keynote address, Gardner went on to say, “Dr. King had a radical vision that racial equality cannot be achieved without economic equality and that an economy that leaves tens of millions of people of all races struggling to make ends meet must be restructured.”
George Goehl, executive director of National People’s Action, told the standing-room-only audience that “mass inequality” was “no accident,” but is instead “the result of a masterful forty-year plan” by CEO's and right-wing politicians.
“Their agenda 40 years ago was simple. Reduce wages and worker protections, cut taxes for corporations, deregulate industry and privatize anything and everything. Those were their goals,” said Goehl.
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