For 43 days in 1968, Washington’s National Mall was transformed into a protestor’s shantytown. Approximately 3,000 people moved into tents and makeshift structures lining the grass between the Lincoln Memorial and the Capitol to create Resurrection City. Activists camped to advocate for better wages, better social services, and affordable housing for the poor. The thousands of protestors were part of a new group called the Poor People’s Campaign, a coalition organized by Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. before his assassination.
“This will be no mere one-day march in Washington,” King said of his vision for the event and the campaign, the fruits of which he would never see. “But a trek to the nation’s capital by suffering and outraged citizens who will go to stay until some definite and positive action is taken to provide jobs and income for the poor.”
Today, the Poor People’s Campaign that began in ‘68 has been reborn, with an even more expansive mission: To advocate not only for the 43 million Americans living in poverty, but for the undocumented immigrants being torn from their families at the border; for the disenfranchised voters; for the incarcerated; and for climate refugees. After six week of national acts of civil disobedience, working people representing 40 states according to the organizers, gathered in Washington, D.C. on Saturday to celebrate Resurrection City’s anniversary and to reaffirm its vision.
[For more on this story by SARAH HOLDER, go to https://www.citylab.com/equity...s-the-nation/563681/]