Whidbey Island Martin Luther King, “Blessed are the Peace Makers” community event, held Monday at St. Augustine’s-in-the-Woods Episcopal Church in Freeland attracted a crowd.
An estimated 185 people attended the service, which featured the music of Karl Olsen accompanied by Danny Ward on sax and the ICTHUS youth singers. The ICTHUS singers are an ecumenical group with singers from Trinity Lutheran, St. Augustine’s Episcopal and Langley United Methodist.
In addition to singing, seven teenage youths were readers in the interactive dialog. The interactive dialog connected the destruction of the original Jim Crow in the 1960’s with the rise of a New Jim Crow or mass incarceration of African American and Latino males.
Judge Dennis Yule gave a personal testimony how the law enforcement and judicial system operated to allow a disproportionate incarceration of people of color. It was something that disturbed him personally. Judge Yule gave personal examples of bias against people of color in the current law enforcement and legal system. The research of Michelle Alexander, author of the “New Jim Crow” was used as a basis for the interactive dialog.