TEXARKANA, Ark. (KTAL/KMSS) – The Greater Texarkana Chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) found a different way to celebrate the life of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Monday amid the coronavirus pandemic.
“They worked too hard to get this thing classified as a federal holiday,” said Texarkana NAACP President Robert Jones. “And as I tell folks, we need to make sure we do something on this day. Otherwise, it will go past and nobody will ever know it.”
Each year, several groups in Texarkana hosts a weekend of events leading up to the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day. The community has parades, art galas, prayer, and programs to highlight the life of Dr. King.
“We done went from a whole weekend of activities just to this one. And so it kind of gives them the fact that we haven’t forgot about it,” said Jones.
To keep everyone safe, the group streamed the program live on YouTube. There was lots of singing, prayer, and poetry.
“Bringing people together from all parts of Texarkana. We got young people. We got the scholars. We got top teens.”
Participants included CHRISTUS St. Michael Health System Vice President of Public Affairs, Dr. Loren Robinson, as keynote speaker.
Dr. Robinson shed light on the importance of Blacks paying attention to their health, picking the right physician, and getting the right treatments – especially in the age of COVID-19.
“Health disparities affect us as Black people every single day and it doesn’t matter where on the spectrum of Black you are. You will still and can be affected by these disparities,” Dr. Robinson said.
The Texarkana Chapter is encouraging people in the Black community to join the NAACP. Local leaders say their participation is needed now more than ever.
To learn more about the Greater Texarkana Chapter of the NAACP visit their website.