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‘I Have a Dream’ Voting Rights March Planned in Phoenix on Aug. 28

DMI Staff

Phoenix will be one of a handful of nationwide locations for a March On For Voting Rights on Aug. 28, the 58th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.’s historic March On Washington, when he delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech. 

The main event is planned for Washington, D.C., with satellite marches set to take place in Atlanta, Houston Phoenix, Sacramento, St. Petersburg and Miami, all places the organizers say voting rights are under attack. 

The marches are co-sponsored by civil rights organizations that include the Drum Major Institute, originally founded by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and now led by his son Martin Luther King III, his wife Arndrea Waters King, and their daughter Yolanda Renee King.

The organization aims to continue the work of Dr. King Jr. by addressing racism through peaceful solutions.

The Phoenix march is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. at Pilgrim Rest Baptist Church, 1401 E. Jefferson St.

In addition to mobilizing people on the day of the event, the organizers also hope to push for more longstanding progress with the passage of the For the People Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Act in the Senate, said Martin Luther King III, who serves as the Drum Major Institute’s board chairman.

The bills have passed in the U.S. House of Representatives but have stalled in the Senate. 

“The Senate is an uphill battle, it feels like,” King said. “But I would have to say that in 1965 when my father and John Lewis and many others were trying to get the Voting Rights Act passed, it was an uphill battle.”

In addition to advocating for voting protection legislation, march organizers also intend to register 2 million voters around the country by the midterm elections next year, King said. 

These efforts come at a time when lawmakers in some states are working to pass more voting restrictions than ever before after record voter turnout in the 2020 election.

New laws that restrict voting access have been passed in 18 states, including Arizona, since Nov. 3¬†with another 61 bills still being considered by state legislatures, according to New York University School of Law’s nonpartisan policy group the Brennan Center for Justice.

At the same time, 25 states enacted 54 new voting laws that expand access in some way and some states passed legislation that does a little of both. 

“Ultimately I think if more people participate in the process or are allowed or given the opportunity, then we have hopefully not just better-elected officials but elected officials who truly represent the interests of all people,” King said.¬†

See the full article on AZ Central.

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