“What is the cost of inequality?” Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration keynote speaker calls for ‘radical’ policy change

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT) – Monday evening Viterbo University hosted its annual Martin Luther King Junior Celebration, virtually.

During the live-streamed event, the MLK Leadership Award was presented to Amanda Goodenough, Assistant Director for the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse’s Research and Resource Center for Campus Climate.

The Lynda Lowry Student Leadership Award was given to Logan High School student Chaya Davis, the Founder & President of Black Student Leaders.

The keynote address was given by social justice leader Rev. Dr. William J. Barber II, co-chair of the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival, a movement Martin Luther King Jr. launched in 1968.

Barber talked about MLK’s legacy and said that if we want to honor him and continue his work, we have to push for ‘radical’ policy change.

“What is the cost of inequality? Not what does it cost to fix it, but what is the cost to leave it the same? Because to leave this systemic racism, systemic poverty, and these other interlocking injustices unaddressed, is to be constitutionally inconsistent, morally indefensible, and economically insane. Nothing would be more tragic than to turn back at this point,” Barber said.

More than 1,000 people tuned in to the virtual event.

It’s still available to watch, just check out the video below or visit Viterbo’s Facebook page.