Newspaper Article Archive of
The Kalona News
Kalona, Iowa

Newspaper Article Archive of
The Kalona News

January 11, 2018 MLK Day activities in Johnson County
Article Pages -- as published on the The Kalona News website.

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Monday, Jan. 15, marks the federal holiday celebrating the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. I’m so pleased our country has chosen to honor this great man and I hope you enjoy the holiday in his name. As usual, the Board of Supervisors will be doing a proclamation in his honor on Thursday, Jan. 11, at 5:30 p.m.

We would like to think America has come a long way since the 60s. After the 2016 elections, I’m not certain I feel that way any longer. Race was a huge issue in the 2016 election, and the team the racists supported won.

Look at America today. Black Lives Matter is a response to the epidemic of black men being killed by police. The U.S. Supreme Court killed much of the Voting Rights Act, and they are likely to kill affirmative action. Black men are more likely to go to prison than college. The list goes on and on. Our society still has a deep racial divide.

We also need to recognize that King was a radical. America grudgingly accepted racial reforms because they were less dangerous to the status quo than the other issues King championed. King took seriously the biblical teachings that the love of money is a sin, and that rich men will not be welcomed into heaven. (Yes, King was a Social Democrat!) He proposed seismic changes to the political and social structures that exist in America. In addition, King was adamantly anti-war. To the status quo, he was the most dangerous man in the world.

Take some time this week to read some of the great books that are out there on King. More importantly, take some time to read the things he wrote himself.

And if you are so inclined, there are several worthwhile local celebrations. Here are a few:

• The University of Iowa celebrates Human Rights Week in conjunction with the MLK holiday. There is a long list of events; see for details.

• Beginning at 9 a.m. the Martin Luther King celebration “Morning Glory Unity Prayer and Reflection Service” will be held at New Creations International Church. The church is located at 2929 E. Court St., Iowa City.

• Iowa City’s Unity March will be held on Monday, Jan. 15. Citizens will gather at 10 a.m. at Faith Academy located at 1030 Crosspark Ave., and walk in a demonstration of strength and support to Grant Wood Elementary School at 1930 Lakeside Dr. A program with entertainment, service projects, and a call-to-action town hall meeting will take place at Grant Wood Elementary until 2 p.m. Transportation will be provided to retrieve vehicles left behind.

• Beginning at 2:30 p.m., the annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day community celebration will commence at Bethel A.M.E. Church, under the leadership of Rev. Kimberly Abram-Bryant. Community guest speakers, Praise Dancers, and musical selections will be featured. The church is located at 411 S. Governor St., Iowa City.

• The Coralville Public Library will present a public reading of Martin Luther King Jr.’s iconic “I Have a Dream Speech” at 5 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 15, in the library rotunda. Readers will include representatives (including yours truly!) from local government, library partners, and community groups who work to make King’s vision a reality. Library patrons will also be encouraged to share their own dreams for a more just world, and the library will display them throughout the month.

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