National Action Network (NAN), led by civil rights leader Rev. Al Sharpton, announced the route for a rally and march on MLK weekend, just six days before the presidential inauguration.
The 2017 march on Washington will take place on Jan. 14 and will start at the National Sylvan Theater and lead to West Potomac Park via Independence Ave. SW and end with a rally across from the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial.
Participants will demand accountability not just from President-elect Trump but from Senate and Congress members who are charged with overseeing the Criminal Justice Reform Act, the Voting Rights Bill, Supreme Court nominations and other Trump political appointments.
The movement, #WeShallNotBeMoved, aims to send a clear message to elected officials about the continuing fight for equal rights and justice.
The top concerns are: police reform and mass incarceration for low-level, nonviolent crimes; keeping the Affordable Care Act; and addressing climate change.
“We are calling on the Democrats and moderate Republicans to stand up and block and filibuster and do whatever to stop a retreat in those areas,” Sharpton said in an interview. “These things should be totally and unequivocally non-negotiable.”
Sharpton said he opted to hold the rally on Saturday Jan. 14 – the first day of Martin Luther King Jr. weekend – to honor the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. and “set the tone” of inauguration. He hopes that if people see a massive group rallying for civil rights, they will question the president-elect on his stance on these issues.
“The 2017 march will bring all people together to insist on change and accountability,” said Sharpton. “Martin Luther King Jr.’s struggle for civil rights didn’t end with his death, it’s a fight we take on each day. The political players may change but our goals stay the same. Donald Trump and his administration need to hear our voice and our concerns.”