Forty-nine years after Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. led a landmark civil rights march from Selma, Alabama to the state capital, Montgomery, hundreds of Bostonians made their own four-mile march to call for completing the civil rights crusade left unfinished by King’s 1968 assassination.
The throngs chanted “No justice, no peace, no racist police” as they approached Boston Common. Dozens of police lined the protest route. A single construction worker yelled at the crowd “Police lives matter too!” as it passed by City Hall Plaza.
“I haven’t been out at the most recent protests, but this being Martin Luther King Jr. Day, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to add my voice to this movement,” said Corie Osborn, a 30-year-old from Boston. “He said ‘The time’s always right to do what’s right.’ So I’m here.”
This march followed a protest last week by dozens of activists who snarled traffic during the morning commute on I-93. Large marches in greater Boston also occurred following last year’s non-indictments of police officers in the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner.
“It being MLK Jr Day, it’s important to stand against racial injustice in this country,” said Art Reyes, a 28-year-old who is living in Dorchester. “He (MLK) really did an important: he built power for people who were being marginalized.”
Said Rev. Willie Bodrick II, a Boston-based minister, “Everyone’s just fighting for justice. We have to hold our country accountable and hold each other accountable.”