Loving tributes, honored late Civil Rights Leader, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. who state Senator, Kevin Parker said, paved a way for politicians including Yvette Clarke, Una Clarke, Chuck Schumer, and himself.
Parker, in a passionate address, encouraged others to live Dr. King’s legacy of service. He said the civil rights leader advocated for the rights of all, and called for activism in community and society, during his 16th Annual “A Shared A Dream” concert on Jan. 20, at Goshen Temple of Seventh Day Adventists, in Brooklyn.
He thanked church officials for opening their doors to the community, like Dr. King, who took the church to the streets. “His life and legacy is critical today, said Sen. Parker adding that he was born just before the civil right leader’s assignation, over fifty years ago, and reminded, that it’s the responsibility of adults and community leaders to educate the next generation to give rise to Dr. King’s legacy.
“Dr. King did not only fight for the rights of African-Americans, but for everyone. He fought for the rights of sanitation workers, for women, for lesbians, for housing,” he contended.
“We are here to refresh ourselves in the memory of the civil rights leader, and to recommit to his work and legacy, of service, and love,” he said thanking supporters and sponsors for celebrating Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
“It is my hope that this year’s “A Shared Dream” celebration reverberates beyond the borders of our district, and the relevance of Dr. King’s words act as a catalyst for the healing that’s needed in our nation,” he said.
Noting that it was a privilege to celebrate Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King’s legacy, Congresswoman, Yvette D. Clarke said, he devoted his life’s work to fighting for people from various aspects of life regardless of race, gender, religion, ethnic background, sexual orientation and any other form of discrimination used against minorities.
She said he was gifted with the power to touch both the minds and hearts of people and unify them under one common goal. “His cherished legacy continues to live on and empower us to reform and protect equal justice under the law. Dr. King taught us how to breathe hope into our communities during times of exclusion, racism and hate.”
“As we gather to commemorate the work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and to achieve the true “American Dream,” let us remember the civil rights leader and all the men and women who were instrumental in fighting for progression. These brave and courageous individuals put their lives on the line through peaceful non-violent protests, so that you and I can be treated as equals,” said Congresswoman Clarke.
Dr. Una S.T. Clarke, thanked Sen. Parker for his steadfast commitment, and reminded residents of the contributions they must make to their community, in honor of Dr. King’s legacy.
Senate Majority Leader Schumer also thanked Sen. Parker for celebrating the life of Rev Dr. MLK Jr. and promised to clean injustices, and bring an end to the scourge of gun violence that is killing children, chanting, “we wouldn’t wait.” “Unto victory in the memory of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. we’re going to take our society back,” he said.
The celebration, attended by New York City Comptroller, Scott Stringer, opened with the pouring of libation by Baba Ifayinka (Carl Fanfair), of the IIe OSA Knaran Yoruba Cultural and Spiritual Center, and prayer by Bishop Orlando Findlayter of the New Hope Christian Fellowship.
Host, WLIB broadcaster, Liz Black, kept the audience entertained, during the word and song concert, that opened with a stirring dance and drumming performance by Ifetayo Cultural Arts Academy.
Purelements: An Evolution in Dance “Cry Out,” choreographed by Dominique Adams, also sent a powerful message.
Gospel singer, Adrianne MickiDee Haye, made way for singer guitarist, Guillermo Dark Feather, who both enriched the tributes that continued with a moving performance of “We Shall Overcome” by Dave McClure, whose testimony brought the audience to its feet.
Gospel singers Anaysha Figueroa-Cooper, wowed the crowd with an acapella, while “Stella Award Nominee” Group Fire, inspired dancing at the front of the stage with their passionate praise worship. Other performers were Stage 63 String Band, William Gilmore, and Cristo Rey, of Brooklyn High School.
In keeping, with the vision of “A Shared Dream Foundation,” Adigun Olusola and Elijah Hardison, received a scholarship award of $1000.
Sponsors included 1190 WLIB, 107.5 WBLS, Macy’s Nationalgrid, Con Edison, Verizon, REBNY Real Estate Board of NY, Doc’s Bakery, Golden Krust, Clifford Smith Photography and Aces Beer & Soda Distribution, Inc.