LAS VEGAS (KSNV MyNews3) -- Fifty years ago, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. read off a list of demands. Among them he talked about voting rights, laws targeting black Americans, equal pay and employment.
This year, across the country we have stop and frisk laws in New York, changes to the voting rights act, and changes to the way we vote -- the conversation doesn’t seem that different than it did in 1963.
But it’s the economic numbers the paycheck numbers that might surprise you.
According to the Carson County Black Caucus, in 1963 the average salary for a black adult was $22,260. Today, the average salary is just over $40,000.
With inflation factored in, the 1963 salary equaled $312 dollars per week. Today, the average black American brings in $292.
Another concern is the amount of Black Americans without a job. According to the National Urban League, in 1963, unemployment nationwide for Black Americans was 10 percent. Today, that number is 12.6 percent.
Where are we fifty years after Dr. King’s historic speech it is a question far too big to answer right now, but it is a conversation our black caucus hopes to start.
And they hope to start it tonight. A town hall meeting with community leaders where they, like Dr. King, will list their own proposed civil rights demands and they sound very similar to what was asked for fifty years ago.