Indy activists, politicians join Freedom March for MLK Day

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Civil rights activists and local politicians marched through Indianapolis with a message Monday: We still have plenty of work to do in fighting injustice.

The group strode through the snow and ice for the annual Freedom March, hosted by the Indianapolis Urban League on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Mayor Joe Hogsett joined the march honoring King, who would have turned 88 on Monday.

“This year has been a year of the rhetoric of division, of disunity,” Hogsett said. “Through unity comes progress and through progress comes prosperity. Not for some. Not for the few. But for the many.”

April of 2018 will mark 50 years since King was assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee. Sen. Robert Kennedy was in Indianapolis that night campaigning for president. He urged a crowd gathered at 17th and Broadway streets to follow in King’s footsteps with peace, unity and love.

After the march Monday, U.S. Rep. Andre Carson, a Democrat from Indianapolis, told a crowd at the Madame Walker Theater that King’s message is as relevant as ever:

The struggle continues. When you leave here today and go out into the world, spread the word. There are those in this country who would turn back the block and reverse all the gains that have been made, but we can’t stand by and let that happen.”

A statue on the near north side where Kennedy gave his speech after King’s assassination depicts¬†Kennedy and King reaching out to each other — an extension of unity and peace.