I was out wandering around not far from my house this morning when I was lucky enough to catch a bit of the annual Elite News-sponsored Martin Luther King Day Parade. Hundreds of people turned out to watch, lining the former Forest Avenue for at least a mile. The marchers included the mayor (trailing a tiny retinue of city council members, and walking so fast I couldn't get a good shot of him), the Black Police Association, the Skyline High School Marching Band and even Green Lantern and Captain America. (The comic-book nerd who edits this blog helpfully informs me they were more likely John Stewart and Isaiah Bradley, facts I plan to make fun of him for knowing some time in the near future.) Former Mayor Dwaine Caraway was also out, marching with his wife's campaign team and taking time out to effusively hug just about everybody he saw.
I also spied that protest at the Diamond Shamrock Jim's been covering. There were several dozen protesters out there today, among them the Reverends Peter Johnson and Ronald Wright.
The protesters chanted, "No justice, no peace!" and carried signs that read, variously, "What Would Martin Do? Protest!," "Discriminates Against Women. Boycott!" and "Killed A Man For Stealing." The protesters allege that the store owner shot and killed a man who had shoplifted either potato chips or a small amount of money. But the store owner vehemently denies that, telling The Dallas Weekly last week "that was an outside robbery, I had nothing to do with it."
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The boycotters also handed out orange flyers detailing the Shamrock owner's alleged crimes: "Inflated Gas Prices, $10.00 Minimum Debit Card Policy, Killed A Black Man Over a Few $$$, Over 200 Police Service Calls, Gun Carrying Store Clerk, Slave Labor, Disrespects Black Women." (There's much more about the protest on their Facebook page.) In the hour or so I stood alongside them, not a single person entered the store.