Wednesday, August 28, 2013

All Aboard the MLK Bandwagon

Richard Land was inspired by Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" speech. Do tell!

He's the same man who cast aspersions on fellow clergymen Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton as "race hustlers" for their protests of the handling of Trayvon Martin's killing. (25 September update: More on Richard Land's controversial, plagiariazed rant, for which he has never apologized.

I saw part of tonight's Piers Morgan, where Tavis Smiley told the host that Martin Luther King opposed racism, poverty, and militarism. On a day when pundits and politicians both liberal and conservative mouthed platitudes about "the content of their character", etc., he reminded us that in the last five years of his life, MLK lost many friends and gained even more enemies as he stood against the Vietnam War and tried to organize poor people, even planning a Poor People's March.

2 September update: MLK is not around to dispute how people use him and his image to give their causes legitimacy. So we get things such as, MLK: Proud Republican or MLK: Proud Zionist. (Found through Max Blumenthal's Twitter.)


Hattie said...

I thought of him then as a middle of the road reformer. Malcolm X seemed more interesting.
He became more radical as he went along and was posing a serious challenge to the status quo, especially the still widespread support for the Vietnam War, at the time he was assassinated.

Poppa Zao said...

MLK as a reformer, not a revolutionary? Yes, maybe at first. Malcolm X, after his trip to Mecca and seeing Muslims of many races and ethnicities, broadened his scope. His enemy was imperialism and white supremacy, and he had an international view beyond what Elijah Muhammad had.

It's easy to sentimentalize MLK and just go with "the content of their character" but he had much more to say. Poverty and militarism were core concerns of his, and he lost a lot of support.