On Monday, January 20, Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday, Brooklyn Academy of Music honored the iconic civil rights leader during its 34th Tribute in Brooklyn.

This year, the creator of New York Times Magazine’s acclaimed “1619 Project” and a 2017 recipient of the MacArthur Genius Award delivered the keynote speech.

And this year, as in years past, borough, city and state elected officials and community A-Listers showed up and showed out, from Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams to Council Speaker Corey Johnson; from Senators Kirsten Gillibrand and Chuck Schumer to City Councilmember Robert Cornegy and Kings County D.A. Eric Gonzalez; and from to Mayor Bill de Blasio to First Lady Chirlane McCray.

The event also featured music performances by The Brooklyn Interdenominational Choir and Son Little.

Every other [group] in this country that has struggled and made progress owes its inheritance to the black resistance struggle, said Hannah-Jones during her keynote. “When LGBTQ rights groups, for example, fight to have their rights recognized by law, they cite the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment. The clause, passed after the abolition of slavery, guarantees the same rights and protections to all people equally under the law.”

“Black people are the solution,” she said.

This special day was open to the public. But if you missed it you can watch Hanna-Jones’s keynote and view the event photos below.


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  1. I was there On the day of Dr. King’s Birthday, I attend every year. Sure miss your program, which I think is one of the Best in the City. Hope you return soon. I think Ms. Hannah Nikole Jones is fabulous.

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