Protesters march through Oakland to honor Martin Luther King Jr.

OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- Thousands of people marched through Oakland Monday in honor of Martin Luther King Jr.

PHOTOS: The legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr.

The rally and march was not only a commemoration of King's legacy, but also a lesson for many young people about his activism. "To reclaim what Martin Luther King's vision was not only about passive resistance but it was also about active resistance," parent Emily Taylor told ABC7 News.

For many in the crowd, there was a renewed urgency to teach young people about King's efforts in the 1960's to create a coalition of people who pushed for change. "I've been active since 1968 at the height of the Vietnam War. I've never felt as frightened about democracy and our country and the world," Nicky Duxbury from the First Unitarian Church said.

Some parents made a point to bring their kids to experience a lesson that can't be learned online. "This is what we do. We show up, and we stand up, and we speak up," parent Gogi Hodder said.

President Obama encouraged Americans to observe the federal holiday by coming together and helping their neighborhood and community. Government offices and the U.S. stock market were closed in celebration of King. Doctor King's actual birthday was yesterday, but the holiday falls on the third Monday in January.

Click here to see how Dr. King is being honored here in the Bay Area and across the country.
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