March honors MLK

By Isabella Bravo, Staff Writer

Students waving hand-held signs and touting 20-foot banners took to the streets on Martin Luther King Jr. Day to honor the life of the reverend as an international symbol for peace and human rights.

More than 230 community members and students from the U and Westminster College gathered together Monday night for a march to honor King’s work and legacy.

Jay Molock, the U’s project coordinator for academic outreach and a planning committee member for MLK commemoration week at the U, instructed the marchers to observe safety precautions and also reminded them of the memorial purpose of the march.

“Dr. King started a march of disobedience,” Molock said. “This is a march of obedience for commemoration.”

The group marched west on South Campus Drive and then north on University Street to end at a youth leadership award ceremony and percussion concert held at Kingsbury Hall.

Crystal Gittings, a freshman in marketing at Westminster, attended the march with a large group of friends.

“We came to support the progress that has been made and the struggle that continues in the acceptance of diversity,” Gittings said.

Hilal and Harun Mohamed, two brothers ages 16 and 18 respectively, said they decided to attend the march after hearing about the peaceful message of King in their mosque.

Harun Mohamed, a student at East High School, won a MLK Jr. Youth Leadership award for writing his autobiography, and walked in the front of the march with the other award recipients.

Organizers invited representatives of the local religious community to speak at the beginning of the rally on rights and resilience. Molock said five local religious leaders responded. The three religious leaders who spoke recalled King’s words and put his messages about the importance of diversity and education in a 21st century and global context.

“The Reverend’s ideas of peace are sure to break down walls of prejudice,” said Imam Mohammad from the Islamic Society of Greater Salt Lake at the rally. “(King’s message) continues to be a dream for all people at all times.”

Brian Barker, a senior in computer science at the U, said he attended the march to show support for diversity and to honor King. Barker said this year’s MLK Jr. Day is momentous.

“With the inauguration of Obama, it’s a historic week,” Barker said. “It wouldn’t have been possible without Martin Luther King.”

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Thien Sok

More then 230 people march down South Campus Dr. Monday evening to honor the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. The march began at the College of Social Work and ended at Kingsbury Hall.