Magazine

Apr 5, 2018

A half century ago, Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. came to Memphis to march in support of the city's striking sanitation workers. It was the last trip the Baptist minister turned civil rights leader would make in the name of social justice.

Memphis 50 years after MLK’s death
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Shahidah Jones (L) and Rev. Earle Fisher, Black Lives Matter organisers, light themselves using a phone, as they pose for a photo near the De Soto Bridge in Memphis, Tennessee, U.S., March 28, 2018. One thousand Black Lives Matter activists occupied and shut down the De Soto Bridge for four hours in a July 2016 protest. Rev. Earle Fisher: "I didn't have anything to do with (the protest) in terms of starting it but I was definitely there in solidarity with the people." Shahidah Jones: "The vibe of the protest had, then, started to change. It had started out with positive energy, but now you could feel this aggression growing." Helping to resolve the stalemate Fisher got the police to agree to a meeting on community policing and led the protesters off the bridge. Jones: "We get asked a lot as organisers, what does MLK 50 mean to you? It doesn't mean anything different for us than April 5th. Our job is still the same." JONATHAN ERNST/REUTERS

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