Chicago’s Mayoral Candidates Reflect on Martin Luther King Jr. Day

on Jan22

22 January 2019 | 3:52 am

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. not only visited Chicago, he and his family moved to the Lawndale neighborhood in 1966 as he looked to focus on the grassroots movement in the fight for civil rights.

Those who want to be Chicago’s next mayor reflected on King’s messages Monday.

“We can decide if we are OK with the status quo, or we can decide if we will accept the way things have been,” Amara Enyia siad. “Or we can determine that we, like Dr. King, are called to something greater.”

John Kozlar wants to raise the minimum wage so does Bob Fioretti and calls for a more organized celebration for King.

“I would have a day of service,” Fioretti said “Chicago Public Schools would have a day of service for everyone. Whether it’s getting out, cleaning up our neighborhoods, today–shoveling snow.”

Kolzar said we need to start “practicing what we’re preaching in Chicago.”

“If you have a billion dollar corporation, they can pay a little bit more than $15 an hour so people can actually live in this city,” he said.

Others see the need for jobs as the best crime fighting tool.

“I will remove the obstacles to hiring individuals with criminal backgrounds,” Paul Vallas said. “Particularly those non-violent criminals.”

“We need amnesty for people that are reformed ex-offenders,” Lashawn Ford said. “That’s what I would do as the mayor, that’s going to start the process of giving people real hope and real opportunities.”

At Monday’s Operation Push breakfast to honor King, Gov. J.B. Pritzker weighed in in as well.

“I think Dr. King would say we’ve come a long way but not far enough,” he said. “There is so much work to do still. And of course with the tone at the national level set by the president of the United States who is taking us backward, not forward.”

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