It’s King’s day in Kings County!
Members of anti-war group Peace Action Bay Ridge Interfaith Peace Coalition huddled in the cold outside Good Shepherd Lutheran Church on Jan. 19 for the third annual candlelight vigil to honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. — which this year had a special message about gun violence.
Besides lighting candles to remember the man who led the 1955 Montgomery Bus Boycott and the 1963 March on Washington, the group held up banners reading “Disarm” and handed out fliers that recalled the Newtown massacre and stated that eight children die by gunfire each day. Organizers argued that King, who lost his life to an assassin’s bullet, would lead the fight against gun lobby groups were he alive today.
“He would certainly disapprove, I would think, the National Rifle Association,” said Coalition member Vicki McFadyen.
Other Coalition leaders said that guns are part of a culture of violence in American, which pervades everything from our urban streets to our foreign policy.
“Martin Luther King holds up the highest ideals of what the United States stands for,” said Pastor Bob Emerick of the Bay Ridge United Methodist Church. “It’s a struggle to maintain those basic core values that this country was founded, and to work for a way of thinking where non-violence is the norm.”