MEMPHIS, Tenn. — It was a picture of Martin Luther King’s dream.
Faces, black and white, were standing and sitting together at Crosstown Concourse Wednesday night for an “Evening of Storytelling” on the 50th anniversary of King’s assassination in Memphis.
Civil Rights icons including John Lewis, Ruby Bridges and Rev. Jesse Jackson were in attendance along with King’s one-time lawyer and former Tennessee Attorney General Mike Cody.
“The things Dr. King wrote and talked about in 1967 and `68 are as real now and as much needed in terms of reforms and changes as they were then,” said Cody.
Many will concede the need for change was more overt in King’s days.
1960’s student activist Diane Nash took the opportunity to recount the indignity of growing up with Jim Crow laws.
“When I obeyed those signs, I felt like I was agreeing that I was too inferior,” said Nash.
Wednesday was just as much about looking to the future as it was reflecting on the past.
Activist Tami Sawyer was the only millennial from Memphis who spoke on stage.
She said her generation was key in bringing about what she considers the greatest local Civil Rights victory of recent times — the removal of two Confederate statues last year.
“You had MLK 50 approaching, you had social media attention and then you have the fire of our millennial work,” said Sawyer.
— Luke Jones (@LukeJonesTV) April 5, 2018