OPINION: Seattle’s Enduring Connection to Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

by Larry Gossett


The annual Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. March and Rally will take place on Monday morning, Jan. 17, beginning at 11 a.m. at Garfield High School.

Please remember that the Seattle Martin Luther King Jr. Organizing Coalition, as always, desires that as many people as possible join us for the 40th straight year that we are hosting a community salute and tribute to MLK Jr.’s marvelous effort to bring about racial and economic justice for all people in the United States.

Every year, thousands of grassroots people attend our event. As in the past, this year’s rally and march will be held at Garfield High School, located at 400 23rd Avenue, at East Jefferson Street.

No other city’s grassroots community organizers can match our record of achievement. That is, no other city has put together such a tribute to the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. 39 years in a row. Help us keep up this great tradition by joining us at this year’s celebration. 

Remember, y’all: No other citizenry from any city in our country has been as able as Seattle’s activists — especially its Black, other People of Color, and progressive white community leaders — in attracting thousands of folks from all walks of life to come together every year to pay tribute to Dr. King’s legacy.

The focus of our celebration of Dr. King’s leadership of this country’s monumental civil and human rights movement is centered every year on workshops around important issues dealing with racism, economic and gender inequality, and other inequities facing our community locally and/or nationally.

This year is no exception; our theme is “TRUTH IN EDUCATION, NOW!” Our Organizing Coalition is asking folks to join us as we discuss ways our community can better resist and struggle against right-wing attacks on us locally and get our teachers to teach the truth about Black history. We also plan to discuss how we might end all the lies Republicans and other racist conservatives are spreading about the 2020 presidential election being stolen from Donald Trump.

Finally, because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, our people’s rally, like last year’s, will be held outside in the parking lot in front of Garfield High School, and we are, again, asking everyone to wear a mask. For those who forget, we’ll have plenty of masks available to pass out to you at Garfield on Monday. We will also, due to the pandemic, have reduced numbers of workshops — all of them this year will be on Zoom.

For information on workshops for y’all to attend and to find out about which will be held during the days before Monday, email us at mlkseattleworkshops@gmail.com or go to https://www.seattlemlkcoalition.org/workshop-topics-2022.


Editors’ Note: For additional local events honoring, remembering, and celebrating Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s leadership and the ongoing impact upon today’s civil rights movement, check out the Emerald’s “Guide to Local Events to Celebrate Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.


The South Seattle Emerald is committed to holding space for a variety of viewpoints within our community, with the understanding that differing perspectives do not negate mutual respect amongst community members.

The opinions, beliefs, and viewpoints expressed by the contributors on this website do not necessarily reflect the opinions, beliefs, and viewpoints of the Emerald or official policies of the Emerald.


Larry Gossett, a longtime social justice activist and former King County Councilmember, is a member of the Seattle MLK Jr. Organizing Coalition.

📸 Featured Image: Scenes from the 39th Annual March and Rally to commemorate Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in 2021. (Photo: Susan Fried)

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