57 Years Later, ‘Get Your Knee Off Our Necks’ March on Washington Kicks Off

Photo via NAACP livestream.

Protesters continuing to push for racial justice took to the National Mall Friday for the March on Washington.

Friday marked the 57th anniversary of a seminal moment in Civil Rights history.

On Aug. 28, 1963, Martin Luther King, Jr. led the march to demand civil rights for Black people. It was there he delivered his iconic “I Have a Dream” speech.

Protesters gathered at the Lincoln Memorial Friday morning, and the plan is to march to the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial, according to The Washington Post. Tweets from those at the rally show COVID-19 precautions in place like temperature checks and hand sanitizer.

Rev. Al Sharpton and Martin Luther King, III will speak at the rally, which is being called the “Get Your Knee Off Our Necks” march, a reference to George Floyd’s killing in Minneapolis in May. Floyd, a Black man, was killed by Police Officer Derek Chauvin, after Chauvin held his knee on Floyd’s neck for almost nine minutes. Floyd was accused of using a counterfeit $20 bill at a grocery store, which prompted the call to police. Witness footage of the incident went viral, sparking outrage among protestors who demanded justice for Floyd and other black Americans who have been victims of racism and police brutality.

On Sunday, Jacob Blake, a Black man, was captured on video being shot seven times by Kenosha, Wisconsin Police Officer Rusten Sheskey. Cellphone footage went viral in this incident as well, reigniting Black Lives Matter dialogue and protests.

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Maryam Shahzad

About Maryam Shahzad

Maryam is a reporter with Montgomery Community Media. She graduated from the University of Maryland in 2019 with a bachelor's degree in broadcast journalism. Previously, she was an intern with MCM. She can be reached at mshahzad@mymcmedia.org or on Twitter @maryam_mcm.


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