By Marlee Ginter

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – It’s a day marked with marches, speeches, and chants of unity, peace, and equality.  Now, Martin Luther King Junior Day sits marred by unrest and uncertainty as armed National Guardsmen surround downtown Sacramento.

“The feeling is that we have to keep his dream alive more than ever because of what we’re seeing downtown,” said Betty Williams, President of the Greater Sacramento NAACP.

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Williams is pushing forward with plans to caravan through the streets.  What’s usually a walking parade is now a drive-by parade because of the pandemic.

“This is horrible but what I hope that this MLK caravan is going to let individuals know that in the midst of a challenge, there’s still hope,” Williams told CBS13.

“The threats to Capitols in all 50 states is unnerving, and troubling and disconcerting to all Americans,” said Margaret Fortune.

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Fortune is the president of Fortune School of Education, a charter school aimed at bridging the achievement gap for African American students.

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“MLK day is really not just a day.  The lessons of MLK are ones that we should be teaching 365 days of the year,” said Fortune.

Fortune says passing on the message of Martin Luther King Junior is more important than ever in today’s climate, especially for her students who never fail to inspire her.

“They give me confidence that in the long run things will be ok. And remember that it was MLK who said, ‘The arc of the universe is long but it bends toward justice’,” said Fortune.

The MLK Day caravan, hosted by Black Lives Matter and the NAACP, starts at 9 a.m. at Grant High School and ends at Sacramento State University where King Jr. spoke less than six months before he was assassinated.

 

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