The Democratic Council of Martha’s Vineyard and Indivisible Martha’s Vineyard are co-sponsoring the March for Voting Rights on Saturday, Jan. 15, at Five Corners in Vineyard Haven. The event is planned for 1 pm, according to a press release, but will not be held in the case of severe weather. This will be one of many marches and rallies to take place across the country, according to the press release.
“No celebration without legislation,” Martin Luther King III, son of Martin Luther King Jr., said according to the press release. The press release said he vowed to use his father’s memory to press Congress and the White House to bring the John Lewis Voting Rights Act and the Freedom to Vote Act “across the finish line.”
According to the press release, the King family urged local organizers to cross nearby bridges. This is in memorial of the 1965 crossing of the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Ala., where peaceful protesters, including the late Congressman John Lewis, were “brutally beaten” by law enforcement officers. This event was televised nationally, which helped to shift opinions in favor of voting rights, according to the press release.
Martha’s Vineyard marchers will be starting at Five Corners, going over the Lagoon Pond Drawbridge, and continuing on to Eastville Beach. This is a distance of approximately 1 mile.
“We’ve been trying to figure out how to best commemorate MLK Day,” Carla Cooper, a member of Indivisible Martha’s Vineyard, told the Times. “There [are] a bunch of groups on the Island that wanted to do something, since the King family sent out a request for groups around the country to commemorate Dr. King by marching over local bridges in their community in solidarity and in remembrance of the marches that they did for civil rights.”
Cooper said Indivisible Martha’s Vineyard and the Democratic Council reached out to other groups on the Island to be a part of the march, such as Black Lives Matter and the League of Women Voters.
Cooper also mentioned the voting rights acts the groups are in favor of, which she said “are currently being filibustered in the Senate by Republicans.”
To register for the event, visit bit.ly/VotingRightsMarch.