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February 08, 2006
Answering those who disagree with me...

On my Post on the Coretta Scott King Funeral...

This is for Jack of Random Fate, who posted on the subject. But it is also for everyone else who dissagrees with me. I feel ya Jack, and I can understand how those who dissagree with me feel about the issue. Many of them have no real bonifides to say what should or should not be said at Mrs. King's wedding... But that is another story altogether.

I think in the end, it is all about what her family thinks, and I have been too busy with business to look arround and see if there have been any comments. If anyone knows of any, please post in comments.
As for my own feelings... Let me tell you a short story. My father died when I was 18. At his funeral there was an older man wearing a KKK ring. I as a young radical wanted to kick his ass. My mother seeing my anger pulled me asside and said a few words I will never forget. "Your father was respected by many people, including some whose beliefs were directly contrary to his. That man came here to pay respects to your daddy... leave him be..." The man later approached me and told me some stories about my Dad that I have never forgotten, perhaps because of who the story teller was, perhaps because they showed the respect my mother spoke of. My older brothers and sisters all spoke to him, as did my Mom, and he had a kind word for all of them...

My mother was no Coretta Scott King, but she was a great and classy lady, like Mrs. King. I think in her own way, she was proud that my fathers legacy was so strong, that it bought even the enemy to the table. The Gentleman was respected, and not a word was spoken about who he was. All of us had our opinion, and outside the Masons Hall where my father lay in rest, that opinion was expressed. But never was the line crossed during the ceremony... Perhaps because NONE of us really knew what Daddy would have liked us to say or do, but we knew he would have been proud that even an old foe had to give him his "props." So that is how I feel about the issue. I dont speak for Mrs. King or her family, but knowing the classy lady that she was, I CAN'T believe she would have snubbed the President of the United States, even though we know she stood in contrary to most of what he stands for....

From Steve Gilliard:

What? They think we don't know they're racists? They hated Dr. King and his wife in life and now in death. They hate that blacks and latinos no longer live in peonage. Only one of their bought and paid for fools would attack how Mrs. King was buried. To the rest of it, it was a fittintg tribute and making Bush sit there for hours was wonderful. He was told the truth and he couldn't run.

My answer, where the fuck is my check?

Please folks, we are all going to have opinions on this. I have stated mine, but I will be damned if I am going to be called a sellout because I dont believe Mrs. King's funeral should be used as a political platform, at least not in that way. All this rantin' and ravin' is just another way of being a fucking crybaby, and I for one am sick of it. I don't give a rats ass if I have to turn in my progressive card... I believe we need to get off the bullshit and start coming up with some ideas to sell our ideology, and I for one have never been a person to sell myself or my product by being a clone of the worst of my competition.

Mrs. King and her husband fought for something, and they did it with class. King was not affraid to invite the enemy to his table, and rather than confronting that enemy with anger, he sought to teach and inform and show them the error of thier ways.

It is shameful that the day after the lady was put to rest, we are using her funeral as a dividing force, instead of celebrating her wonderful legacy. Do any of you actually think that she is happy with the ANGER that is being expressed today, instead of people celebrating her life and talking about how we continue her work? And for all the so called big blogs on the progressive side who are using this as a rallying cry... Grow the fuck up. I grew up during the civil rights struggle. I have been called Nigger and worse. I met Mrs. King, and my parents marched with Dr. King.

If you want to use the name of the Kings to advance the progressive cause, do what they did... Roll up your sleeves, put down your fucking Latte and organize REAL grass roots movements, not internet cluster fucks. Because HELLO, despite all your BLOGPOWER, we still lost in 2004... King was not affraid to go to Jail, and niether was Coretta. They were not afraid to go into the slums and shanty towns and organize voters. They were on the front lines in a war that has went low impact but continues. Until you are ready to do more than sermonize and attack from behind a keyboard, you have no right to claim their legacy or to define it...

Hat Tip CT

Posted by David A at 11:37 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 941 Words
Mrs. King's Funeral Program

I thought some of you might enjoy having this as a little piece of history.

Coretta Scott King's Funeral Program - Download PDF Here

Please don't link directly to the download. If you want to link, link to the post. Thank you...

Posted by David A at 10:39 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 42 Words
February 01, 2006
Coretta's Legacy - A Conservative Assessment

In cruising the blogsphere for perspective on Mrs. King, I found this on James Joyner's blog...

She was a revered figure--as Juan Williams put it on NPR, the "queen" of the civil rights movement--solely for the fact that she was Dr. King's widow. She has spent the last several decades doggedly fighting against any attempt to portray King as anything but a Christ-like figure and has succeeded in elevating him to iconic status beyond his actual role in gaining equality for black Americans.

Having met Mrs. King, I have little argument with James about her efforts to preserve the memory of her husband sin flaws...

But I wonder why James feels he can be a judge of the impact King had on the role of gaining equality for African Americans. Having been associated with the movement nearly from my first steps, and having lived through Dr. Kings assassination, I can say that NO ONE had more of an impact.

I would add, that though the King families iron control of image and copyrights to Dr. King's speeches and documents are a bone of contention for many, and while I would like to have seen "I have a dream," put in the public domain, some forget that Mrs. King had every right to do so. And that much of her support was gleaned from that material after the death of her husband. I am also sure that at least part of that effort was based on keeping her husbands work off of cheap t-shirts and head shop posters.

Posted by David A at 06:08 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 258 Words
January 31, 2006
RIP Coretta...

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From Yahoo News:

Coretta Scott King, who turned a life shattered by her husband's assassination into one devoted to enshrining his legacy of human rights and equality, has died at the age of 78.

Flags at the King Center were lowered to half-staff Tuesday morning.

"We appreciate the prayers and condolences from people across the country," the King family said in a statement. The family said she died during the night. The widow of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. suffered a serious stroke and heart attack last August.

"It's a bleak morning for me and for many people and yet it's a great morning because we have a chance to look at her and see what she did and who she was," poet Maya Angelou said on ABC's "Good Morning America."

"It's bleak because I can't - many of us can't hear her sweet voice - but it's great because she did live, and she was ours. I mean African-Americans and white Americans and Asians, Spanish-speaking - she belonged to us and that's a great thing."

Gov. Sonny Perdue ordered flags at all state buildings to be flown at half-staff and offered to allow King to lie in state at the Capitol. There was no immediate response to the offer, the governor's office said.

King died at Santa Monica Health Institute, a holistic health center in Rosarito Beach, Mexico, south of San Diego, said her sister, Edythe Scott Bagley of Cheyney, Pa.

She had gone to California to rest and be with family, according to Former Atlanta Mayor Andrew Young, who broke the news on NBC's "Today" show.

At a news conference, Young said Coretta King's fortitude rivaled that of her husband.

"She was strong if not stronger than he was," Young said. "She lived a graceful and beautiful life, and in spite of all of the difficulties, she managed a graceful and beautiful passing."

She was a supportive lieutenant to her husband during the most tumultuous days of the American civil rights movement, and after his assassination in Memphis, Tenn., on April 4, 1968, she kept his dream alive while also raising their four children.

I had two occassions in my life to meet Mrs. King. Once as a child during the Civil Rights struggle, and once as a young man, when she was keynote speaker at my College Fraternities National Convention.
I don't remember much about that first meeting. I was only five or six years old at the time. But I do remember her appearance at my Fraternities National Convention. What I remember most is how she carried herself... Like a Queen, a lady of class and dignity. I remember thinking how much she has suffered in her life, and how she had never been bowed by the experience.

I remember imagining this noble woman being spit on, cursed and called all manner of names. And I remember her dignity. Somewhere, in storage back in the U.S., I have a picture of us together. As National Director of Publicity at the time for my Fraternity, I had the honor of escorting her. Having done the same of Jesse Jackson and Willie Brown, I remember how different it was with her. It was like being in the presence of a Saint.

Those brief encounters I will never forget. She was a very special lady. Now she gets to see her beloved Martin again. I can't be sad, because I know how much she missed him. Rest in Peace Mrs. King... Rest in Peace...

Posted by David A at 12:26 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 587 Words
January 28, 2006
Remembering the fallen heroes of The Challenger Shuttle Disaster

Joe has an excellent piece on the 20th Anniversary. My God has it been that long? I remember watching it unfold live... So sad. I guess my Generation has lived through a lot of disasters. Perhaps it is time to have a moment of silence and prayer for all the victims, the heroes and the families of the fallen...

Posted by David A at 09:11 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 59 Words
December 11, 2005
Richard Pryor... RIP

Tony Pierce has one of the most fitting tributes I have read... And I may be a day late on this, but as a man who grew up with Pryor, I feel a need to say something...


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I saw Richard Pryor for the first time back in the late 70's at the Comedy Store in Hollywood. Back in those days the Comedy Store was the place you took a date to show how hip and cool you were. It was crowded, smoky and uncomfortable, but it was THE PLACE. I don't even remember how many up and coming stars I saw there back in the day, but I will never forget Richard. He was ahead of his time. He was to young comedians, what Bo Diddley and Little Richard were to the generation of Rock Stars that followed them. He was... The Man.

Eddie Murphy, Chris Rock, all the dudes who followed him owe him a debt of grattitude, because without his trailblazing work, they would not have the opportunities they have had. My prayers go out to his family and friends, and I hope that there will be a fitting tribute sometimes soon.

Kevin of Wizbang also provides a nice tribute.

Posted by David A at 07:10 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 204 Words
 
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