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Charlotte Talks: Voter Backlash To 287(g) / MLK's Final Days Play Out In R&B Opera

Tom Bullock

Monday, May 14, 2018

Immigration enforcement was a major issue in Mecklenburg County and other sheriff's races. Is the tide of support for 287(g) turning? Then, an R&B opera that reimagines Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s final days.


The 287(g) program and local involvement in immigration enforcement encountered backlash in Mecklenburg County and elsewhere in the primaries for sheriff.

Mecklenburg sheriff and 287(g) supporter Irwin Carmichael lost to Garry McFadden, who vowed "287(g) is going to be history. The Durham County sheriff, who honored federal immigration detention requests, was defeated by a candidate who promised to "not cooperate with ICE." And an anti-287(g) candidate won the Democratic sheriff primary in Buncombe County.

What do the election results say about public attitudes toward local law enforcement helping enforce federal immigration efforts?


Nicole Svajlenka, Center for American Progress, senior policy analyst of immigration policy

Dr. Margaret Commins, Queens University of Charlotte, associate professor of political science



The nation recently marked the 50th anniversary of the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s assassination. The civil rights leader’s final hours are relived and reimagined in what’s been hailed as an “extremely powerful” production by Opera Carolina.

“I Dream” has been a work-in-progress since its first incarnation in 2006, eventually transforming into an R&B-infused, living-history opera that’s unlike anything the company has staged before

Mike Collins talks with the opera's writer and composer, as well as the actor stepping into the role of an American legend.


Douglas Toppin, writer and composer of "I Dream"

Derrick Davis, actor portraying Dr. King in "I Dream"

James Meena, Opera Carolina general manager and principal conductor

Today's guests from Opera Carolina with Mike Collins

"I Dream" will be performed May 18-25 at the Knight Theater. Tickets and other information can be found here.

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