Bus riders air route concerns

metro -- A Carta bus turns on to King Street traveling north Friday March 19, 2004. (GRACE BEAHM/STAFF) Published Caption 6/4/05: CARTA drivers are deciding whether to go on strike for higher salaries. Published Date 1/6/2009: CARTA had a healthy increase in ridership in 2008, demonstrating the bus system is growing and improving.

The Rev. Jesse Jackson will lead a rally on Martin Luther King Jr. Day in Charleston as part of a statewide series of events he said will call attention to the fight against social injustice and poverty.

Jackson said Wednesday his Rainbow Push Coalition will announce a 10-point plan to make the South better.

The event, set for 6 p.m. Monday at the International Longshoremen's Association Hall, 1142 Morrison Drive, will also feature state Sen. Robert Ford, state Rep. Wendell Gilliard, Kenneth Riley of the ILA and Diane Salazar of the Latino Association of Charleston.

Ford is distributing fliers calling the event the "Rally Against the Right" and the "Rally to stop Republicans from turning back the clock on civil rights."

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Jackson said the event will call national attention to the state's voter ID law, which he says equals voter suppression; "oppressive immigration laws," workers rights and "economic suppression."

"Most governments in Southern states no longer care about civil rights," Jackson said. He said the apathy is evident "in how governments are using more prison labor so they can cut public works employees, which tend to be more stable blue collar jobs."