The National Action Network, along with members of the NAACP and other civil rights groups, are holding the Reclaim the Dream rally on Aug. 28, the same day that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech 47 years earlier.
The event, which is headlined by the Rev. Al Sharpton and Martin Luther King III, aims to commemorate the anniversary of Dr. King’s speech. Organizers plan to address education, justice and jobs.
Glenn Beck of Fox News, along with Sarah Palin and the National Rifle Association, will be hosting his own rally, Restoring Honor, on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. The event is supported by many local Tea Party affiliates and is focused on paying tribute to America’s service personnel.
Sharpton said the march is not a reaction to Beck’s rally, but others disagree. With members of the Tea Party and Palin expected to attend Beck’s rally, members of the NAACP and other civil rights groups feel Beck is not upholding the message Dr. King expressed on that day.
“As we prepare to mark the 47th anniversary of his [Dr. King’s] ‘I Have a Dream’ speech on this date, Glenn Beck and others are expected to push for the expansion of states’ rights – the exact antithesis of the civil rights movement and Dr. King’s legacy,” said the National Action Network’s website.
NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Jealous will be joining National Action Network members at the event. “I will be proud to stand with my family and all my brothers and sisters on Aug. 28 to reflect and honor the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.,” said Jealous on the NAACP website.
Founded in 1909, the NAACP is the oldest and largest civil rights organization in the United States. With the initial purpose of ensuring the rights promised in the 13th, 14th and 15th amendments, today the NAACP works “to ensure the political, educational, social, and economic equality of rights of all persons and to eliminate racial hatred and racial discrimination.”
The rally will begin at 11 a.m. at Dunbar High School and march to the Martin Luther King Memorial on the Tidal Basin at 1 p.m.
– Jay Cohen, with contributions from Cara Kelly and Dan Merica