By James P. Hoffa
Published in the Detroit News, April 4, 2018
Today marks the 50th anniversary of the tragic assassination of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., a man who stands forever tall as one of the greatest leaders in U.S. history.
I’m in Memphis today, where King was murdered, with my fellow Teamsters, other union members, civil rights leaders and social justice activists to remember the life of a man who was an icon not only for African-Americans, but all who faced injustice, including the working poor.
Many may not know that King was in Memphis at that time because he was advocating for striking Memphis waste workers who faced unsafe working conditions and low pay. Two months earlier, two city sanitation workers had died when the vehicle they worked on malfunctioned and killed them. The reverend made it clear in his famous “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop” speech, delivered the night before his death, that he was sure justice would come for all those disenfranchised, just not sure when.