President Donald Trump signed into law H.R. 267, the “Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historical Park Act,” which re-designates the Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site in Georgia as the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historical Park.
Joining him onboard Air Force One were Dr. Alveda King, the niece of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, Isaac Newton Farris Jr, a nephew of the famed human rights icon, and Bruce Levell of the National Diversity Coalition for Trump. The signing took place after Air Force One touched down in George, when the president was on his way to attend the college football national championship game between the University of Alabama and the University of Georgia.
"Through his life and work, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. made America more just and free," White House deputy press secretary Hogan Gidley told reporters aboard the plane. "This important historical park tells his story, and this bill will help ensure that the park continues to tell Dr. King’s story for generations to come."
The legislation upgraded the designation of the site to a national historical park, and expands the boundaries to include the Prince Hall Masonic Temple. The site already contained Dr. Martin Luther King’s birthplace, the church where he was baptized, and his burial place. The Masonic temple was the headquarters of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, which King co-founded. It is the first such national historical park in Georgia.
Earlier on the same day, Trump signed a related bill, the African American Civil Rights Network Act, which requires the National Park Service to link various historical sites related to the civil rights movement. Trump also signed the 400 Years of African-American History Commission Act to commemorate the arrival of the first Africans in the English colonies at Point Comfort, Virginia, in 1619.
Spero News writer Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.