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The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

Annual March for the Dream celebrates MLK’s legacy

Thousands of people walking down 13th Avenue towards Land Park Drive during the annual MLK March for the Dream that started and ended at City College Monday, Jan. 20, 2020. (Sara Nevis/[email protected])

The 39th annual March for the Dream started and, for the first time, also ended at City College on a cold Monday morning. 

Sacramento citizens from different backgrounds and professions came to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy. 

The president of City College and other prominent figures addressed the participants before the walk, and local rapper Consci8us performed a couple of songs while participants waited for the Extra Mile addition from Oak Park.

The 4-mile-long walk route started at City College and took marchers from Land Park, down to Broadway, then looped back and ended at City College where vendors from the Diversity Expo waited. 

“It’s not just about commemorating and celebrating Dr. King’s life but to be able to have Sac City College be the place where the march begins is truly special,” said City College President Michael Gutierrez. “To be able to honor—not just amend his message—and to do it from our college is really special. Generally, the march begins at City College and has for over 35 years. The convention center [where the march usually ends] is under repair, so we were asked if we’d also be the place where it ends, and we said, ‘Sure.” So that’s how it ended up being a loop this year where we start and end at Sac City College.”

City College graduate Marlon Lara, currently a legislative assistant to Dr. Richard Pan, a state senator, participated in the march. 

“Dr. King symbolizes everything about being American—inclusivity, respect and tolerance,” said Lara. “I think tolerance is what this march means to me. I think it’s important to just reflect on Dr. Martin Luther King’s legacy and what it means to all of us. We know his legacy means that we are inclusive, and we want a better society for our children.” 

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Pan also participated in the march. 

“This is extremely important because it is a time for us to come together and say we stand together against injustice,” said Pan. “We want justice. We want to make sure that we have a stronger community, and this is a visible manifestation of this, right? Because when we all get together, we can see all of us together. We can see this huge march, all of the people here. We know that we are not alone we are together as a community. That is a very important message to send.”

Stevante Clark the brother of former City College student Stephon Clark who died in a police shooting in 2018, participated in his second MLK march.

“The dream of Martin Luther King coexists with the legacy of Stephon Clark,” said Stevante Clark. “ I believe my being here is a part of my brother’s legacy and a part of keeping the dream for Martin Luther King. I want to keep my brother’s legacy alive, his name alive. Anywhere I can be seen or anywhere I can say his name or be with the people or connect with my community is keeping my brother’s legacy alive.”

Clark said that before his brother was killed in 2018 by two Sacramento police officers, he did not attend the march. 

“Now… I understand how important his dream is—King’s dream—and how important legacy is,” Clark said. “So that’s why I’m out here—just to keep the legacy, keep the dream alive, and keep fighting and pushing.” 

The Sacramento Police Department and Police Chief Daniel Hahn also participated in the march. Hahn said he has participated in the march for a couple of decades. 

“This event is huge and has been for many many years, and if you look around, it’s our entire community walking out here,” said Hahn. “I think the more we do what we’re doing today on a daily basis, the more we’ll find solutions to what ails us as a society and as specific to Sacramento. We divide way too much in our community and nationwide. So it’s just nice to see everyone coming together and not tearing each other apart.”

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