On Aug. 28 in Detroit, the Rainbow PUSH Coalition led by its founder and president, the Rev. Jesse Jackson Sr., and the UAW along with friends and allies, will march to mark the beginning of a new campaign that will call on our leaders to rebuild america by enacting policy that will unleash the skills and talent of the American workforce. The “Rebuild America March for Jobs, Justice & Peace” will take place on the anniversary of that day in 1963 when Martin Luther King, Jr., president of the SCLC, Walter Reuther, president of the UAW, and other civil rights leaders joined with hundreds of thousands of Americans for the March on Washington.
Organizers say it’s time to enact real change for working families and all America. It’s time to reverse the policies that have resulted in jobs and investment flowing out of the country, creating economic hardship for millions of Americans. It’s time to “Rebuild America with Jobs, Justice and Peace,” focusing on the following.
Jobs — Economic reconstruction driven by targeted stimulus, reindustrialization and trade policy that will create jobs, support manufacturing in America and put workers first.
Justice — Enforcement of the law regarding workers rights, civil rights, industrial regulation creation of strong urban policy, and fair and just education, economic and health policy.
Peace — Ending the ongoing wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, saving lives and redirecting the war budget to rebuilding America.
Organizers invite all who share this commitment to march in Detroit on Aug. 28. They believe nothing is more important than strengthening our coalition of conscience and restoring the promise of democracy and economic justice for working families.
The Aug. 28 march will also commemorate Detroit’s 1963 Walk to Freedom led by Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. He delivered his famous “I Have a Dream” speech for the first time before sharing it with the world later that summer at the March on Washington.
From Michigan History Magazine: In the spring of 1963, Detroiters looked for a way to commemorate the anniversary of racial violence that tore through their city 20 years earlier that left 34 people dead and hundreds injured. The Detroit Council for Human Rights called for a “Walk to Freedom,” because many of “the same basic, underlying causes” of the 1943 disturbance were “still present.”
On June 23, 1963, an estimated 125,000 people marched down Woodward Avenue carrying placards and singing “We Shall Overcome.” National and state leaders who marched along with Rev. King included United Auto Workers president Walter Reuther, former Michigan governor John B. Swainson, and Detroit mayor Jerome Cavanagh.
The march ended at Cobo Hall where the Rev. King was cheered by thousands of marchers when he emphasized that segregation had to end and spoke of having “a dream” where Whites and Blacks were “walking together, hand in hand” in harmony and equality.
Later that year, King was named the Time Magazine Man of the Year. The following year, he won the Nobel Peace Prize.
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