Some Detroiters To Turn Celebration Of MLK March Into EM Protest

DETROIT (WWJ) Thousands are expected to arrive in Washington D.C. this weekend to honor the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King’s march on Washington.

They say all politics is local, and that’s true in this case with some Detroiters who plan to join the festivities saying they’re going to combine it with an emergency manager protest.

Rev. Charles Williams with the National Action Network, who is calling for Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr to step down, said he’ll be among those on three buses pulling out Friday night from Detroit to Washington, D.C.

While they’re there, protesters plan to head to the Maryland home of Orr, who is leading Detroit through a historic bankruptcy case, and make their voice heard.

“I think that it is important for us to send the message about our disgust and distaste … about emergency management, which we feel is anti-democratic and a challenge to our voting rights,” Williams said.

After 60 years of financial disorganization and neglect, Orr said bankruptcy is the city’s only way out of financial insolvency. Because he was appointed by Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder and not elected by Detroit residents, some believe Orr is acting wrongfully.

Williams is also upset about a comment Orr made in an interview in the Wall Street Journal several weeks ago where he called Detroit “dumb, lazy, happy and rich.”

“If it takes two weeks to make an apology, how sincere is your apology?” Williams said.

There are still some spots on buses sponsored by the Detroit NAACP. Call the NAACP at 313-871-2087 for more information.

“We say get involved, get engaged and let’s not allow the clock to be turned back,” said Detroit NAACP President Wendell Anthony.

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