Longtime social justice advocate Ike Thacker announced this week he is running for mayor of Louisville as an independent.
Thacker is a local writer and community activist who serves on the boards of the Kentucky Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression and the Fellowship of Reconciliation. He also served as a spokesman for Occupy Louisville, which held a six month long protest in downtown against U.S. economic policies.
Thacker says he is running to help the poor, and plans to advocate for cuts to military spending as mayor to help invest in low-income parts of the city.
“I simply believe that all 7 billion of us on this planet and the 750,000 or so of us in Louisville are absolutely, equally human regardless of everything. That’s every black or brown person in west or south Louisville just as much as the Ivy League east enders,” he says.
Democratic Mayor Greg Fischer announced last month he is seeking re-election.
Thacker made the announcement this week in a message to supporters, where he eschewed economic policies towards working-class families and called for cuts to military spending.
Occupy was ordered out of a local park by Fischer last year, and an ordinance was passed to ban encampments as a result. Supporters of the movement criticized the legislation as heavy-handed.
Asked about if the mayor mistreated Occupy, Thacker says Fischer was fair to protestors but hasn’t done enough to advance causes or proposals to help the city’s poor.
“And those kind of things are not the issues that Greg Fischer is raising, and that’s really the biggest difference. If I may use the word, I’m a good bit more radical than Mayor Fischer,” he says.
No Republican candidate has announced intentions to run for mayor in 2014.