WASHINGTON, D.C. (WIAT) — In honor of the 56th anniversary of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s and other protestors’ arrest in Birmingham for non-violent protests, U.S. Senator Doug Jones will lead a bipartisan reading of King’s Letter from the Birmingham Jail on the floor of the United States Senate chamber. Sen. Jones will be joined by Senators Lamar Alexander (R-Tennessee), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Tim Kaine (D-Va.), and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) for the reading of the letter on the Senate Floor.
The reading will start at 2:45 p.m. You can read the historic letter by clicking here.
From Doug Jone’s press release:
In April 1963, Dr. King penned the letter from his cell at the Birmingham Jail, where he and other protestors were detained for leading a series of nonviolent protests and boycotts in Birmingham to put pressure on the business community to end discriminatory hiring practices. He wrote passionately in response to an open letter led by eight white clergymen from Alabama urging him to abandon his efforts in Birmingham, calling his protests “unwise and untimely” and criticizing him for being an outsider coming in to agitate in Birmingham. Dr. King rejected the notion that African-Americans should remain patient in the struggle to shed the bonds of oppression and daily indignities inflicted by Jim Crow laws in the South. In his letter he famously responded to their criticisms writing, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”