The original March on Washington was held on August 28, 1963 to show support for civil rights legislation in Congress and also raise awareness about the racial, civil, and economic injustices Black Americans faced on a daily basis. Sadly, not much has changed in the 57 years since then: Black people are still being targeted by the police and even key voices in the Black community are continually silenced. During the most pivotal election year probably ever, it's critical for BIPOC to band together to create change, which is why peaceful protestors are gathering at the Lincoln Memorial this year to leave a lasting impression — much like Martin Luther King Jr. did all those years ago.
As meaningful as this D.C. protest sounds though, not everyone can make it IRL to this year's March on Washington, whether it be because of physical distance or COVID-19-related risks...you know, since we're technically still in a pandemic right now. Thankfully, there's a solution — many organizations have joined forces to create a virtual march so supporters can participate safely from home.
“Our 2020 Virtual March on Washington is about asking everyone — from protesters in the streets to elected officials at all levels of government — to commit to pursuing a new agenda that prioritizes equity, justice, and equal opportunity for all,” President and CEO of the NAACP Derrick Johnson said in a statement. “As we approach the November elections, we must mobilize to vote like we’ve never done before.”
A post shared by NAACP (@naacp) on Aug 26, 2020 at 12:48pm PDT
“We must consider the lives we are attempting to forge for our families and communities,” Johnson continued. “We must act in our best interest to knock down the walls of injustice and grant future generations access to higher social, economic, and political power. This is what the 2020 Virtual March on Washington is all about.”
Here's how to tune into the 2020 March on Washington virtually and be part of it:
Log on to 2020march.com
Think of this website as your official guide to all things March on Washington. In addition to providing updates to those looking to engage in the event online, the very first page of this website offers a live countdown ticking down the hours before anything airs.
On the site, you'll get updates about events and speakers, including programming and Thursday keynotes from Stacey Abrams, Nancy Pelosi, Cory Booker, and Rev. Dr. William J. Barber II.
Know the official schedule of events
The actual 2020 March on Washington doesn't start until August 28, but before the big day happens, there are a few smaller events happening on August 27 at 8 p.m. ET. Those who tune in to 2020march.com can expect to hear "Lift Every Voice and Sing" (aka the Black national anthem) and performances from musical guests like Macy Gray.
There will also be a keynote panel discussion featuring Stacey Abrams, the former Democratic leader in the Georgia House of Representatives, the 2018 Democratic nominee for governor of Georgia and the Founder of Fair Fight Action, Fair Count, and the Southern Economic Advancement Project.
On August 28, footage of the D.C. march will start broadcasting at 11 a.m. ET. Reverend Al Sharpton and Martin Luther King III will both be giving speeches live from the event to "restore and recommit" to "the dream" Dr. Martin Luther King spoke about in his historic "I Have a Dream" speech in 1963.
Later Friday evening at 9 p.m. ET, there will highlights of the march, additional musical performances, and a TBD speaker giving a keynote speech broadcast on the site.
Check social media
2020march.com has also provided its readers with a list of organizations that will be showing content from the march on their respective platforms, meaning there are multiple ways for you to tune in here. You can follow coverage with the hashtag #MOW2020 or pay special attention to the handles of organizations participating in the event, including but not limited to:
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