Eastern Michigan University, in collaboration with the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit, is bringing a distinguished keynote speaker to the annual Martin Luther King Junior celebration event this year. White House correspondent for PBS and NBC and MSNBC political contributor Yamiche Alcindor will be delivering the keynote address virtually this year because of the pandemic.
WEMU's Lisa Barry talked with the award-winning journalist about her experiences covering President Donald Trump and what message she hopes to share in her address.
Alcindor is the daughter of Haitian immigrants and has written extensively on the intersection of race and politics. She has covered the impact of President Trump’s policies on the working class, immigration, and breaking news coming out of the Middle East and Asia. She also has reported on the presidential campaign of Senator Bernie Sanders and the legacy of President Obama, as well as how police killings affect communities and children.
She has had several confrontations with President Trump in White House briefings and talks about what that was like for her. She says her MLK Day message is going to be about doing the right thing and standing up for what you believe in and what you know to be true from her non-political position as a reporter. She says, as a society, we all need to be thinking about how each and every one of us plays a part in making it a better place and plays a part in helping our fellow men and women.
Alcindor’s virtual keynote address will run from 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. on January 18. It is the centerpiece of the University’s overall MLK celebration, which this year carries the theme, “We the People Speak: No Justice, No Peace.” The celebration runs from January 15-18, with the virtual academic programs set for Sunday, January 17 and Monday, January 18.
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