Participants listen to post-march speeches at the Federal Building in downtown Seattle.

 Photo by Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren Thousands gathered peacefully in Seattle streets Monday both

Photo by Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren

Thousands gathered peacefully in Seattle streets Monday both to honor of Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy and to protest police abuse and racism in the criminal justice system.

Signs honoring the late Dr. King were juxtaposed to others alleging police brutality and discrimination aimed at the African American community. Slogans such as “Same story every time, being black is not a crime,” and “Hands up, don’t shoot” wafted over the march, which stretched for blocks at its height.

The nearly two-hour long march made several stops. The first was to the King County Youth Detention Facility, where City Councilwoman Kshama Sawant decried a planned expansion of the property. The center has been the subject of a heated debate over the past several years.

Other stops included the Seattle Police Department’s downtown headquarters and the King County jail, also downtown.

A number of speakers were present, in particular Jelani Brown, a community activist and organizer who has played a significant role in events in Ferguson, Missouri. Brown spoke at length about institutional racism and its effects on the African American community, admonishing the crowd to take action and noting that he felt the pent-up frustration of the people in Seattle.

Appearances were made by Seattle Mayor Ed Murray and Governor Jay Inslee at a pre-march rally. Neither spoke nor marched, unlike politicians in several other states, including Colorado.

View the full slide-show of Monday’s march here.

Photo by Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren

Governor Inslee poses for a selfie with a young marcher. Photo by Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren

Photo by Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren

Activist and Ferguson-based organizer Jelani Brown speaks to the crowd at Garfield High School before the march.

Speakers rally the crowd inside Garfield High’s gymnasium.

People cheer a speaker during a pre-march rally.

Members of the crowd listen to pre-march speakers outside Garfield High.

A girl takes a selfie with Governor Jay Inslee at a pre-march rally.

A young boy holds up a sign protesting the planned expansion and renovation of the King Couty Youth Detention Center.

Monique Taylor-Swan, with SEIU 775, makes a speech before the march.

People listen to pre-march speakers at a rally outside Garfield High.

Marchers cheer as a speaker inspires the crowd prior to the march.

Shouting “Hands up, don’t shoot!” marchers make their way through the Central District.

Shouting “Hands up, don’t shoot!” marchers make their way through the Central District.

Shouting “Hands up, don’t shoot!” marchers make their way through the Central District.

Shouting “Hands up, don’t shoot!” marchers make their way through the Central District.

Marchers cry out “Same story every time: being black is not a crime!” while taking part in an MLK Day march in Seattle.

The march stretches for multiple blocks as it winds its way down Yesler Way.

City Councilwoman Kshama Sawant speaks out against the King County Youth Detention Center in front of the building.

Marchers pass by the King County Youth Detention facility.

A speaker talks about the justice system in the shadow of the King County Detention Center.

A speaker talks about the justice system in the shadow of the King County Detention Center.

A speaker talks about the justice system in the shadow of the King County Detention Center.

Marchers listen to speakers in front of the King County Detention Center.

Marchers listen to speakers in front of the King County Detention Center.

Thousands pause in front of the Seattle Police headquarters in downtown.

Thousands pause in front of the Seattle Police headquarters in downtown.

Thousands pause in front of the Seattle Police headquarters in downtown.

Thousands pause in front of the Seattle Police headquarters in downtown.

More in News & Comment

Business alliance serves women of African diaspora in King County

Nourah Yonous launched the African Women Business Alliance in 2017 to find ways to lift women up.

Fire along Twisp River Road in the Okanogan Wenatchee National Forest in 2018. Courtesy photo
Wildfire response: State unveils funding legislation proposal

Last year, Department of Natural Resources responded to record number of wildfires.

A new report, complete with recommendations to the Legislature, has been released by a statewide task force that was formed to address a lack of child care in Washington. File photo
Report outlines lack of child care in Washington

In King County, supply doesn’t meet demand for child care.

You’ve been hacked! Data breaches in Washington on the rise

But fewer people had personal information compromised from cyberattacks in 2019 compared to 2018.

Demonstrators from La Resistencia protest Amazon’s involvement with ICE. Photo courtesy of La Resistencia
How will the U.S. respond to climate refugees?

Business as usual has been harder borders, are there other ways to address climate migration?

Stolen rescue dog, lost peacock reunited with owners

Federal Way police share emotional reunions after tracking down stolen dog in abandoned home, finding lost peacock.

A young girl holds up a ‘Don’t Pollute I Live Here’ sign in the crowd during the Youth Climate Strike at Cal Anderson Park on Friday, March 15, 2019 in Seattle, Wash. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
King County builds blueprint for health, climate change

The plan will inform how the Board of Health addresses climate change-related health issues.

File photo of a pothole
King County approves roads, bridges funding

The capital projects funding is significantly less than previous years.

Safe drug consumption sites have been recommended by the King County Heroin and Opioid Task Force. Pictured is a safe consumption site in Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada. Photo supplied by ARCHES in Lethbridge
What’s been happening with safe injection sites?

There hasn’t been much coverage this year compared to the last couple years.

Most Read