In Oneonta, a community march and interfaith service were held Tuesday night, and programs were planned at the State University College at Oneonta on Wednesday.
Scheele, who posted a civil rights march display at City Hall this week, said he wasn’t “on the front line” of the movement but emphasized lessons during his teaching career.
The role of labor and church leaders, in addition to the efforts of civil rights advocates, was key to the resulting attendance at the 1963 march, he said. Many in the crowd wore their “Sunday best” clothes, said Scheele, who recalled that he wore a suit and tie.
“The crowd controlled itself,” he said. “The same was true Saturday.”
From Washington on Wednesday, U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer issued a statement.
“On this day 50 years ago, Martin Luther King Jr. kindled Americans’ hopes that his dream of full equality could be achieved, Schumer said. “While we have made great progress, we still haven’t achieved that laudable and necessary goal.”
U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, who visited Delhi and Oneonta on Wednesday, also issued a statement about the civil rights movement.
“Dr. King spoke of ‘the fierce urgency of now’ which I hope this Congress will embrace,” Gillibrand said. “Among the many issues requiring that fierce urgency of now is restoring the Voting Rights Act this year ahead of the upcoming midterm elections.
“The Voting Rights Act had been a cornerstone of ensuring the rights won in the civil rights movement continue to stand strong today, until it was essentially gutted by the Supreme Court this past June,” she said. “The right to vote, that too many died to obtain, is a sacred human right.”