U.S. Politicians and Public Criticized for ‘Whitewashing’ King’s Legacy

U.S. Politicians and Public Criticized for ‘Whitewashing’ King’s Legacy

Martin Luther King – Jan 15, 1983 when that date became a national Holiday

“MLK is celebrated only by ignoring and deleting his core beliefs: that real social progress was impossible without ending imperialism, militarism, and economic inequality.”

“Modern day Republicans and Democrats often speak as if they love King, even as they excoriate the real heirs to his legacy: the Black Lives Matter activists and other social justice warriors who fight for racial and economic liberation.”
—Steven Thrasher,    The Guardian
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  • guyaneseonline  On January 16, 2018 at 7:09 pm

    Published on Monday, January 15, 2018 – byDemocracy Now!

    Newly Discovered 1964 MLK Speech on Civil Rights, Segregation, and Apartheid South Africa
    On December 7, 1964, days before he received the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo, King gave a major address in London.

    In a Democracy Now! and Pacifica Radio Archives exclusive, we air a newly discovered recording of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. On December 7, 1964, days before he received the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo, King gave a major address in London on segregation, the fight for civil rights and his support for Nelson Mandela and the anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa. The speech was recorded by Saul Bernstein, who was working as the European correspondent for Pacifica Radio. Bernstein’s recording was recently discovered by Brian DeShazor, director of the Pacifica Radio Archives.

    WATCH VIDEO – READ TRANSCRIPT

    • Ron Saywack  On January 18, 2018 at 7:38 am

      A natural-born leader, he was a giant of a man in his limited time. Thanks for sharing this gem, Cy!

      MLK was an incomparably and astonishingly brilliant orator, visionary and pioneer of the Civil Rights Movement in troubled, divided America. His time on the planet was brutally cut short by haters, but not before he impressively left indelible footprints on the sands of time.

      His lamentation of the existential racism, segregation, and inequality in America and South Africa is poignant. Alas, no one can say that he did not make a difference. That he did in a big way; the understatement of the ages.

  • Rosaliene Bacchus  On January 17, 2018 at 12:56 pm

    In publicly honoring MLK, the guardians of the truth are able to control the narrative.

  • Gigi  On January 19, 2018 at 6:55 pm

    MLK was an uncle tom who didn’t practice what he preached. But like most uncle toms, he was a useful establishment tool. etc

    THE REST OF THIS ENTRY HAS BEEN DELETED BY THE EDITOR… REASON BELOW

    • guyaneseonline  On January 20, 2018 at 9:55 pm

      REPLY TO GIGI – re MLK COMMENTS

      I just read the ugly comments you have made and I am shocked at the overt hatred she spills, besmirching the name of the great man, labeling him “an uncle tom”. I do not think such vile has any place in civil discourse. It’s an affront to all who care about the end of hatred, bigotry and racism in the world. How can anyone dare take the liberty to sully the name of one of the greatest freedom fighters the world has ever known?

      MLK’s epic struggles led to the enfranchisement of blacks, the end of segregation in America and made significant progress on the road to equality, among other things.

      I do not like to take sides in debates on this blog. However, I do know a lot about MLK and this was a disgraceful comment, and I have to defend the honor of Martin Luther King. Your comment has therefore been deleted.

      Again, you are being warned once more about your racist comments against Black people. This is unfortunate as, most likely, you have a dark complexion and will be considered Black in the US census statistics.

      Editor..

      • Ali  On January 21, 2018 at 7:11 pm

        Bravo Editor. Ban racists. Especially this nasty woman.

    • Mark  On January 26, 2018 at 12:20 am

      Hey, I think I saw this poster supporting white American feminism in a previous blog post? Is this poster Guyanese, or at least from the lower part of the Western hemisphere?

  • Tata  On January 23, 2018 at 1:19 am

    Yes! It is time to let this woman know that the SILENCE on this blog that allowed her to inappropriately engaged in downright racist comments against a particular group of people must end.

    Whenever I listen to the “I have a Dream” speech by Dr Martin Luther King, it sends chills down my spine and tears in my eyes. So, for ANYONE of color to be this uninformed and insensitive to the legacy of this great man, is truly egregious.

    Dr King was the most hated man in America during the Civil Rights era. Not only was he hated by the US government but also by many of color who didn’t share his dream.

    Like GIGI, Malcolm X also called MLK an Uncle Tom, but he too soon came to realize that MLK was not his enemy but a brother who shared the same fate of being Black.

    So, with TIME, I truly hope this woman of color, this mother, this so-called teacher, this bigot would take her children on a historical experience to the African Museum in Washington DC and truly learn the UGLY truths of what Dr King fought against.

    I truly hope you learn how connected you are to America’s history.

  • Albert  On January 23, 2018 at 11:47 am

    Tata: “……..Like GIGI, Malcolm X also called MLK an Uncle Tom, but he too soon came to realize that MLK was not his enehip my but a brother who shared the same fate of being Black”

    Have done some reading about Malcolm X. Many will argue that the reason MLK is officially honored is because of Malcolm X. America had to make a decision on black leadership recognition. The thought of Malcolm X drove a fear in white American . They had no choice but to recognize MLK.

    Secondly, Malcolm X made the point that Gandhi’s “turn the other cheek” philosophy as practiced by MLK, would not work in violent America. Has it worked?. When 40 coward KKK men went to lynch and hang one black man, kneeling and singing we shall overcome would not have save him. If he had a gun and took one or two with him, many other Black men’s lives would have been saved.

    Thirdly, per Malcolm X ……the Blackman has to develop himself and don’t wait for others to do so for him.
    I don’t want to go further but I recommend at least reading the autobiography of Malcolm X to get the big picture and see why Malcolm had to be destroyed.
    Do you know, before his death, MLK made a speech agreeing with Malcolm on the uselessness of nonviolence? Hoover killed him quickly after that.

  • Ron Saywack  On January 23, 2018 at 1:57 pm

    History bears that the Gandhian approach of non-violence, over violence, in the U.S.A., was the prudent choice opted for by Dr. King. One does not have to be a Rhodes scholar to understand that violence begets violence.

    In the final analysis, MLK was able to accomplish significantly more by peaceful means, for example, the right of Black males to vote, beginning in 1965. Black females, however, were constitutionally allowed to vote at the federal level, regardless of race, prior to 1965, following the adoption of the 19th Amendment in 1920.

    It is unfathomable that there was a time, not so long ago, when Black people, by law, had to sit at the back of the bus (segregation). When a bus driver in Montgomery, Alabama asked Rosa Parks to give up her seat in the “colored section” for a White person on 1 December 1955, she refused.

    Her refusal led to the rise of a young MLK and the Civil Rights Movement. MLK helped organize a bus strike in Alabama (by Black folks) which lasted 381 days. The strike effectively crippled Alabama’s bus service and sparked major changes.

    Ultimately, the U.S. Congress enacted legislation to end racial discrimination. MLK’s house was bombed by White supremacists during the strike. MLK was arrested, assaulted and jailed several times.

    Can you imagine how many more acts of cruelty would have been visited upon Black people had King chosen the path of violence?

    N.B: Nelson Mandela’s struggle in the fight against apartheid in South Africa left him no choice but to resort to violent means when all peaceful measures of protest were unjustly and systematically outlawed.

    The two similar national human rights struggles had to be dealt with accordingly as warranted. In the final analysis, both leaders changed the course of history by shattering the shackles of hatred, oppression, and discrimination.

  • Albert  On January 23, 2018 at 8:11 pm

    Ron MLK had no choice but to go the non-violence route. The military forces in the US was, and is still overwhelming. Violence was used against his peaceful marches anyway. In the ending part of his life violence was used to break up attempts to initiate marches.

    In his speech (rarely heard), some days before he was killed, subject to memory, he said,the overwhelming force used by his country in Vietnam was such that he would not preach the use of non-violence as a solution any longer.

    I wish those researchers on this board could dig up that speech. It was played on ABC in NY some 30+ years ago.

    Malcolm point was simple. If an enemy knew he may succeed in killing you but at a price, he is less likely to carry out his cowardly act.

    One could reasonably argue that the white military in South Africa was strong, effective and supported by the US under Regan. When those white parents in South Africa saw so many of their teenage sons returning in body bags from the war in Angola, that became the turning point of Aparthied………the cost of maintaining the system in white lives was too high.

    • Ron Saywack  On January 25, 2018 at 12:45 pm

      Albert: You refer to memory in the preceding commentary. Our memory can sometimes play tricks with the facts, as you would know. It is not always reliable.

      I have not been able to find any video where Dr. King specifically spoke about the Vietnam War, but the following video should clarify his position if he were left no choice but to resort to violent means of protests.

      Overall, he saw the futility and danger of violence. And thus it can be said that the great man was miles ahead of his time — an exemplar of purpose and a paragon of wisdom.

  • Albert  On January 25, 2018 at 3:19 pm

    Ron: “You refer to memory in the preceding commentary. Our memory can sometimes play tricks with the facts, as you would know. It is not always reliable.”

    Thanks for the research but this is not the speech I had in mind. There was a documentary: “Like It Is” by Gil Noble every Sunday at around 1pm on channel 7..ABC.That is where I recall the speech made. Does not serve much of a purpose now. MLK did his best in a difficult situation. I love him but my hero is Malcolm X.

    Non-violence in America, trying to think as Malcolm did, is an appeal to the compassionate side of a country whose history is about acquiring wealth through wars and violence. Dont think African Americans has suffered more than the Indians. A good question is whether major changes in America results from compassion/morality or for economic reasons. In my humble opinion America, through the powers that be, respond only when the “bottom line” is affected. Thanks to Civil Rights, some black people vote, and the country is better because many businesses now have more consumers than before.

  • Tata  On January 25, 2018 at 11:39 pm

    Albert! Two great men—different strategies.

    For sure, you and I can now debate who did or didn’t, but because of the selfless actions of these GREAT men, today we are privileged to engage in these exchange of ideas.

    But let me leave you with the words of essayist, W.E.B. Du Bois, as he sums up the climate of those dark and dangerous times. Hope you understand the each rage

    “The red stain of bastardized, which two centuries of systematic legal DEFIlEMENT of Negro women had stamped upon his race, meant not only the loss of ancient African CHASITY, but also the hereditary weight of a mass of corruption from white ADULTERERS, threatening almost the OBLItERATION of the Negro women hame”.

  • Mark  On January 26, 2018 at 12:32 am

    God Bless you MLK, Rosa Parks, Muhammad Ali, Malcolm X and others who challenged the racist white America status quo. It was a shame that it was only as recent as 50 years ago in America, that a Coloured American wasn’t allowed to eat near a White American.

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