Thoughts on MLK’s “I Have a Dream” Speech

VoltaireThumbby Monsieur Voltaire
Am I the only one who thinks that Martin Luther King (MLK) has been turned into a hyperbole? He’s America’s saint, and a mascot for both whites wishing to preen about their spotless post-racial conscience and blacks who want to hide behind his image to conceal (or blame on someone else) the many self-inflicted social problems that plague them. Since there is much talk about MLK around the 50th anniversary of his most famous speech, I thought I’d repurpose and expand here a comment I made on National Review–which is likely destined for deletion. (Edit: it was deleted, as predicted, after less than 10 minutes. So much for an “honest discussion on race.”)

The comment was on a column on MLK, where the usual sentimental platitudes about his “I have a dream” speech were trotted out. Firstly, I’m no big fan of MLK in the first place. What we tend to gloss over is that he was a Marxist who injected political language into Christianity, a known academic plagiarist and a serial philanderer. As a tragic hero of sorts, he surely did help right a tremendous wrong in the USA, and he did so nonviolently and towards integration, at a time when other “civil rights leaders” like Yeshitela and Malcom X advocated violence and separatism. This is why I’m a fan, but not a big one.

Secondly, I’m starting to get sick of him being sanctified and of hearing the “I have a dream” speech recited as the wisest and most numinous piece of literature in America. The speech has been tremendously useful at the time, but how universal is its message, and should we apply its standards today, what would be our judgment? The refrain of that speech has been replayed so often and so uncritically by both Left and Right, it has turned into a cliche’d earworm. At this point, I’d rather spend a whole day with “I wish I were an Oscar Mayer wiener” stuck in my head, than to stomach another commentator wagging his finger at America and reciting the bit about color of skin, content of character, etc., as if that was a conversation stopper that merited no further critical thinking. If we did not use MLK and his speech as a mascot as we do now, but we followed the words by their own standards, how should we judge the contents of the character of black “leadership” and their typical target audience in 2013? He didn’t say judge not. He said judge by something else rather than skin color–that something else being content of character.

And what is the content of character of today’s black community? After half a century of affirmative action, preferential treatment, glorification in the media, in sports and in popular culture, “mass cultural amnesty” on any of their many social infractions, trillions of dollars spent in redistribution schemes in their favor, black history days, weeks, fortnights, months and years being forcibly celebrated in our schools, a congressional black caucus, black bureaucrats and politicians “owning” entire departments, cities and even states, and a black president serving his second term–what do we get after all this?

We get sky-high illegitimacy rates, nonexistent family, a gangsta culture, glorification of violence, mistreatment of women, antisocial behavior, defiant laziness, willing imperviousness to learning and an irrational hatred for those who do and who assimilate into mainstream America (see treatment of any black conservative, for instance); plus an increasingly overt racial resentment towards non-blacks, which somehow eludes our collective condemnation and culminates all too often (when we’re lucky enough to find out through the dam of MSM lock-down) in the joyride killing of a random “wood.” Pace MLK, I am not turning a blind eye to all this any more.

Perhaps it’s because I’m from Europe, and “my lot” did no more own slaves than win WWII–and therefore I am free of that cultural baggage that ties the tongue of most white Americans when it comes to assessing interracial issues honestly. But I am not celebrating MLK as a saint, much less as a prophet (as an undoubtedly smart man, why didn’t he predict all this?). And I am not looking kindly upon those who hide behind his image to palliate their own destructive lives. When I hear about a white baby being shot in the face or an Australian baseball player being shot in the back by “bored teens” (MSM code for “black hoodlums, but you don’t need to know that”), I don’t ask myself “what would MLK say about this?”–but rather “how should our society as a whole come together to condemn, marginalize and mete out an exemplary punishment against this type of behavior?”

Black society in the 1950’s and early ’60’s had a healthy core and was strongly based on family values; now, it’s the opposite. Back then, we had the flamboyant talent of Louis Armstrong, and the quiet dignity of Jesse Owens. Now, we have the ostentatious talentless insanity of a Snoop Dogg and the extravagant nihilism of a Floyd Mayweather or LeBron James. Back then, when white boys wanted to emulate blacks, we got Elvis Presley. Now we get Vanilla Ice. If there were true black leaders today, instead of caricaturizing mid-century as a time when blacks could be killed for fun without repercussion (see Oprah’s idiotic movie), I would point at that time as one when the black family had solidity, and when black society had an inner dignity that could only be stymied by systemic white racism. Now systemic white racism is gone. Where’s the dignity?

Anyway. I have a dream too. I dream of a time when America, as one, expects the same high standards from all ethnicities and cultures in her midst.  • (4287 views)

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55 Responses to Thoughts on MLK’s “I Have a Dream” Speech

  1. Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

    Good article, MV.

    “I have a dream” are now the stand stand-in words for “Eternal grievance.” MLK may have had a dream, but there is no dream in politics to day — at least from the Left — except leveraging grievance, bigotry, and victimhood for votes, money and power.

    The “Dream” now is simply a useful word connotating the insistence that no racial progress has been made, thus we still need to “dream.”

    There is no doubt that MLK has been white-washed in terms of being a a transcendent leader. But compared to Louis Farrakhan and his ilk, MLK is practically a saint.

    There are two black people who can unabashedly be held up as examples for all of humanity in terms of conduct and healthy ideas: Booker T. Washington and Frederick Douglass. There is no shortage of good examples for race healing. It’s just that race healing is not what the Left or Democrats want.

    And as soon as stupid, guilt-ridden liberal voters (and corporation owners) figure this out, we can oust these race hustlers and marginalize them instead of glorifying their evil.

    MLK has written some great stuff, including his Letter from a Birmingham Jail. But we are to the point now where we have to get past this silly notion that only a black man can comment on black problems. The problems of mankind are universal.

    And in America, if you want to really “dream,” dream about not taking drugs, about not doing crime, about not treating education as “acting white,” about not treating women like your whores, about taking responsibility for the children that you father, about having some faith in your life other than the misplaced faith in the various race hustlers, about working hard instead of thinking that whitey owes you.

    There is no secret as to what it takes to make it in America, although there has been a conspiracy of silence regarding the bad habits of blacks, and others, in regards to how to stay in misery.

  2. faba calculo says:

    Excellent article!

    One must separate how one feels about the great good MLK did from the actions of those today (of all races) who praise him with the words of their tongues but not the actions of their hands.

  3. Kung Fu Zu says:

    Thanks for the article. Too many people have forgotten or never knew King’s full history.

    I grew up in the South and have never had any “baggage” about slavery. I have had this conversation overseas. Firstly, neither I, nor my father, nor his father, nor his father owned any slaves. After all, the WBTS ended 148 years ago.

    Before and after that time, the family consisted of dirt poor farmers who couldn’t afford slaves if they wanted them. This history is pretty common for the majority of Southerners. Anyway, collective guilt after 150 is nonsense.

  4. T_Edward says:

    Excellent article. I think back to the time when Mike Tyson was looking at jail for beating up/raping a woman. I lived in Charleston, SC and many black folks were protesting because, “Black kids need heroes”.
    Well, what about the police chief, Rueben Greenburg, he’s black. What about the fellow that rides the bus to S. Windemere every day to mow people’s grass and feed his family? What about the plumber working on toilets so his kids can have a better life?
    What is it about black people that they have such an inferiority complex (after 50-years of self esteem training) that they can only look up to a black man? Why is it they are so proud of their “accomplishments” yet can hardly spell their own name, let alone balance a checkbook?
    The answer is standards. Hold them to the same standards as everybody else and just wait. Don’t try to lower the other kids in the class, raise the lowest common denominator and bring on the competition!

  5. Libertymark says:

    Agree in concept that MLKJ is more fable than fact. However, kind of a “facts not in evidence” moment, where does the Marxist stuff come from? I find all kinds of stuff on the interwebs about him as Republican and him as Commie. Ther are plenty of categorical statements, none with real compelling, definitive facts.

    On what do you base your position? I’d love some references.

    • Monsieur Voltaire says:

      Mark, there are a lot of references, especially about his associations with CPUSA members, some of whom were radical subversives down the line, including gay-rights agitators, etc. Don West, Myles Horton, and his personal adviser Bayard Rustin were all avowed Communists, as were some of the professors who still awarded him his PhD in spite of the overt plagiarism for which he had become known. Google “Martin Luther King Horton West Rustin” and see the slew of things that come up.

      For instance, this, although a bit virulently written for my taste, has information for which I was not able to find any refutation.

      My point is that before we automatically accept the saints of the Left, we need to see who we are agreeing to bend our knee to. And MLK, although a great man in many ways, resembles too closely some of today’s Leftist front-men, and if you scratch a bit beneath the surface, all sorts of uncomfortable truths come out.

  6. Ed Cottingham says:

    Libertymark>> where does the Marxist stuff come from?
    ***
    I realize that this is maybe just more stuff on the ‘interwebs’ but, at least my name is attached to it, though it may be called hearsay, I suppose.

    I attended a series of university lectures in the 80s for adults who didn’t want to be “dumbasses forever.” One of the evenings was presented by David Garrow, an MLK scholar and author of the Pulitzer-winning biography, “Bearing the Cross.”

    Garrow gave us handouts of a King speech that he delivered privately to a group of black leaders shortly before his death. This was material that Garrow had uncovered after the fairly recent publication of his King biography.

    King told his fellow leaders that the essential battle for civil rights, per se, had been won, and it was time to move on to a broader agenda. He cited a litany of areas like housing, jobs, health care in which he wanted to push the government to provide for everyone as a matter of rights. It was certainly a full-blown socialist agenda although I can’t do better than I have already in citing particulars. But he wanted the whole economic basis of a good middle class life to become an entitlement.

    Perhaps worse was his profound, cynical and manipulative dishonesty. King told his audience that he understood that these things were not actually civil rights. Nonetheless, he urged that they continue to crusade under the banner of civil rights because that language (now to become propaganda) had been so powerful and effective. It could have come right out of any Alinsky or communist playbook.

    At the very least he had become a broad-spectrum agitator for the agenda of the far left. Communist? Socialist? Why quibble about words.

    His accomplishment of preaching a non-violent message at critical moment of our history stands, and his memory deserves to be reasonably honored. But he was deeply flawed not only in his personal life but in his vision for America. It’s a mixed record about which nothing negative can publicly be said in this PC, group-think country.

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      At the very least he had become a broad-spectrum agitator for the agenda of the far left. Communist? Socialist? Why quibble about words.

      Ed, Communism or socialism have become so mainstream, many people hold these views but deny that they do so because, after all, everyone knows that Communism and socialism are bad. So people who have those views call it something else (“social justice,” an “economic Bill or Rights,” whatever).

      And, really, I’m for the same thing: good health care, a “living wage,” plenty to eat, home ownership, etc. The difference is, I’m not a complete dumb-ass regarding the means to achieve these things.

      We don’t need to reinvent the wheel. We already know how to achieve these things. Booker T. Washington mere years after being in slavery was achieving these things, at least to a modest extent.

      There are impediments to achieving these things, and some of them can be institutional, such as slavery. But the biggest impediment now is Big Government, not Wall Street, not racism (it basically doesn’t exist as a factor), sexism (ditto), or any other institutional impediment.

      The things holding people back are race hustlers and overt racists such as Obama, Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, and the legions of useful idiots/cowardly liberals who overlook the bad ideas and practices of “minorities” for various stupid and cowardly reasons (none of which I view as even remotely compassionate). Such people cause entire societies to blame race for something that is not about race. If blacks are achieving at lower levels it is because of the devastation wrought by single-parent families, bad schools, involvement in crime, and the various bad ideas and practices that lead to anything but the middle class.

      Our culture (including quite a few “intellectuals”) still haven’t figured out the whole housing boom and bust thing, for example. It’s still being blamed on various scapegoats. It wasn’t caused by Wall Street. It was caused by liberal policies wherein the idea of “affordable housing” was instituted by the Federal government as a practice. This produced a bubble, one that was bound to blow up because it tried to make an end run around reality. Normal lending practices were suspended. And unless and until we all have a Magic Money Tree that we can just pluck dollars off of when we want, we must follow the laws of economics or face more bubbles bursting.

      But most people to this day probably still believe that the housing bust was because of a lack of government regulation. But the fact is, it was because of too much regulation (and ultimately because of environmental wacko-ism and related things according to Tom Sowell in “The Housing Boom and Bust”).

      You want housing to be affordable? Then get government the hell out of making loans. Get rid off all but sane and essential building codes and environmental policies. Let the free market work which, along with a good education and a good work ethic, are the only guarantors of all the things that bullshit artists (such as FDR) pronounced as “rights.”

      Some have perhaps rightly given MLK a pass because he was in the midst of an institutionalized oppression and he, somewhat understandably, saw government action as therefore the solution to all sorts of problems.

      But just because MLK was either naive or misapplied his knowledge does not mean we have to do the same thing. Booker T. Washington, for instance, had absolutely no delusions about how to create a better life: education and work, work, work, work, work. work, and work. There are no shortcuts. And the shortcuts the Left have come up with are always about plundering other people’s wealth via the government and calling it some sort of “right.” This has created out of once-proud and thrifty Americans an increasingly unruly mod mentality.

      • Ed Cottingham says:

        That’s good stuff, Brad, every single word of it.

        I propose a constitutional amendment that will rename every school, roadway, or other government facility now named the MLK this or that to the BTW this or that. PLUS, BTW as the first black man and non-president to go onto Mount Rushmore.

        >>This produced a bubble, one that was bound to blow up because it tried to make an end run around reality. That “end run” phrase makes me pee my pants with giggling delight.

        I would add one unorthodox (even among conservatives) point to your excellent and illuminating critique of the housing bubble situation: The federal government never had any business in trying to advance the every-man-a-homeowner social-engineering vision in any respect. Home ownership is great…for those who want it and the responsibilities that go with it. Landlords are valuable participants in economic life…EXCEPT when the federal government is the landlord or interferes with tenant/landlord relationships. I would like to live in an apartment but one where the landlord could offer any kind of terms that pleased him and remove any tenant according to the terms of a lease to which the government was not a partner or overseer. Landlords could command a premium for stable communities in which tenants could be pitched out if, for example, any member of a household was ~charged~ with any crime. The landlord could demand the removal of junky cars, whether street-legal or not. Like to rev up your Harley at 7 a.m. before heading for work…you’re out of here buster. Rules tighter than Sheldon Cooper’s landlord agreements! For those who freely choose a well-maintained and regulated community.

        But it is a crime in this country to try to operate an apartment complex that will not accept children. Is this insane? Do adults not have the right to seek out an adult community if that is their choice and a landlord wants to operate that sort of community?

        I live in a townhouse community; they’ve proliferated like rabbits, as everybody knows. I have tons of maintenance issues but not the freedom to address them. HOA boards are community volunteers…there is no one to vent your anger on or to demand solutions from. And what happens as such communities become dilapidated? A big, big problem. They were are a market-derrived response to getting everybody into home ownership which the government drove with social-engineering policies. In my area, even the best apartments are plagued by transient renters and news of apartment fires and killings are a staple of the nightly news. Meanwhile, the government allows people to run down a townhouse and then rent it to a drug-dealing Section 8 household.

        Thanks so much government…for all you do.

      • faba calculo says:

        “But most people to this day probably still believe that the housing bust was because of a lack of government regulation. But the fact is, it was because of too much regulation (and ultimately because of environmental wacko-ism and related things according to Tom Sowell in “The Housing Boom and Bust”).”

        Let me sound my (usual) note of disagreement.

        Contrary to the claims of Dr. Sowell, the crazy run-up in housing prices had very little to do with things like the Community Reinvestment Act. Furthermore, until the very end (when Freddie and Fannie DID jump in in a fairly big way), subprime was not the baby of Congress or the GSEs. It was Wall Street and the shadow banks that dealt in them, in large part to have a product which Fannie and Freddie had no part in.

        COULD government regulation have prevented things from going bad? Sure. WOULD government intervention have been wisely designed? Kind of doubt it. While not the cause, Congress certainly liked what they saw going on, and the regulatory agencies hardly seem likely to want to cross Congress on this. Only the Fed had the muscle AND the independence to act, and they didn’t (for the most part).

    • faba calculo says:

      This emphasis on economic issues was hardly something that became true shortly before his death. The March on Washington itself issued its Ten Demands:

      1.Comprehensive and effective civil rights legislation from the present Congress — without compromise or filibuster — to guarantee all Americans:
      Access to all public accommodations
      Decent housing
      Adequate and integrated education
      The right to vote
      2.Withholding of Federal funds from all programs in which discrimination exists.
      3.Desegregation of all school districts in 1963.
      4.Enforcement of the Fourteenth Amendment — reducing Congressional representation of states where citizens are disfranchised.
      5.A new Executive Order banning discrimination in all housing supported by federal funds.
      6.Authority for the Attorney General to institute injunctive suits when any Constitutional right is violated.
      7.A massive federal program to train and place all unemployed workers — Negro and white — on meaningful and dignified jobs at decent wages.
      8.A national minimum wage act that will give all Americans a decent standard of living. (Government surveys show that anything less than $2.00 an hour fails to do this.) [The minimum wage at the time of the march was $1.15/hour. After adjusting for inflation, $1.15 in 1963 is equal to $8.78 in 2013. Today in 2013, the federal minimum wage is only $7.25, significantly lower than what it was 50 years ago. After adjusting for inflation, the $2.00/hour minimum wage called for in the March demands would be equal to a minimum wage of $15.27 today, more than twice what it actually is.]
      9.A broadened Fair Labor Standards Act to include all areas of employment which are presently excluded.
      10.A federal Fair Employment Practices Act barring discrimination by federal, state, and municipal governments, and by employers, contractors, employment agencies, and trade unions.

  7. Black JEM says:

    What bothers me the most is that after all of these years after his speech, the number of people, primarily on the left, who fail to live as the speech instructed.

    • Monsieur Voltaire says:

      That’s because they never intended to. For committed Leftists, life is just a chain of Machiavellian links proceeding to infinity; their agenda never ends. Fortunately, though, his speech did help inspire America to end institutionalized racism against blacks, and (whatever his flaws) MLK did spur a lot of well-meaning hearts to do the right thing.

  8. Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

    By the way. I just heard from Mr. Lowry and Monsieur Voltaire is now banned from StubbornThings because of this article. That sucks, but nothing I can do about it. Say hi to Derb for me. NRO has a long reach.

  9. molon labe molon labe says:

    MLK was good great man. A man of his times. The sickening canard posted here about him being a Marxist are unworthy of the brilliant man who wrote them. Those (presumed) Cons who seconded the words & deepened the CPUSA conspiracy should be ashamed – & shamed. Square that with The Reverend Martin Luther King. Hearsay loony balderdash. MLK also associated with Republicans. Lots of them. And darn few Dems from his home State or region.

    Guess you had to be in B’ham – like me – when Bull Connors was hosing down / letting loose the dogs on decent folks who had to sit in the back of the bus, or in theater balconies, couldn’t eat in White folks’ restaurants, had different water fountains & bathrooms marked ‘Colored’… No motels to stay in. Cripes, baseball had just been integrated. Still no Southern Colleges… Separate but unequal. Churches being bombed all over several States… This was done by very few Whites while the rest just kept quiet. Or else. How MLK kept things from blowing up 100 yrs after Emancipation is still something that mystifies me.

    This article is wrong headed & wrong. Call it differing opinions. Or me being PC. No founders of this site vociferously defend MLK? There is not one single voice in dissent here on this thread to M Voltaire’s comments.

    Sometimes some things, some opinions are best left unspoken. Not because of PC rules, but because of what they reveal about ourselves. I don’t kick dead Dems on the day they die for fear a dau or granddau will read my venom. Politics ain’t worth that. I don’t kick sand on the 50th Ann of a moving monumental speech, by a decent man. Yeah sure a man with flaws. A lot of young Blacks wanted him to preach violence. Had you or I been young Black men in 1963… I often think about that. Back from another war and the same ole scheisse… God bless you Dr King. You were no Commie. You were on the side of the Angels and are at God’s feet now & forever.

    We wanna diminish THAT?!? Diminish the charlatans & shills, the hucksters & hawkers. But we diminish ourselves by belittling this man.

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      Guess you had to be in B’ham – like me – when Bull Connors was hosing down / letting loose the dogs on decent folks who had to sit in the back of the bus, or in theater balconies, couldn’t eat in White folks’ restaurants, had different water fountains & bathrooms marked ‘Colored’…

      What a self-righteous load of crap. I’m very sure that Monsieur Voltaire is against all that. What a BS Leftist technique you have adopted. “If you disagree with me, you’re a racist.”

      Goodness gracious, man (or woman), learn to think for yourself.

      So what if MLK ran with some Communists and socialists? Is this so hard to believe? So did/does our president. It’s a common occurrence (unfortunately) these days as “social justice” has become the avenue to advance socialism to the unwitting.

      No founders of this site vociferously defend MLK?

      I am THE founder and it’s not about defending a man. It’s about defending an idea. And Martin Luther King, Jr. defended a lot of good ideas. But he wasn’t a saint. And I won’t paint the good Monsieur Voltaire as a racist for pointing this out.

      Good god, enough with your moral grandstanding Molon Labe. Welcome to the site, but you could stand to grow the hell up a little. Read some Thomas Sowell wherein he talks about this society being infested with people who do such moral grandstanding and get us nowhere but further entrenched in the politics of fear-mongering.

      This site’s official policy, now and forever, is that all men are created equal. But not all activists, reverends, or social or political leaders are. I like the idea of judging a man by the content of his character rather than the color of his skin. And you might extend that to Monsieur Voltaire and judge him by the totality of who he is and what he believes rather than finding a reason to get outraged and show us all how supposedly righteous you are.

      MLK wasn’t perfect. Ronald Reagan wasn’t perfect. George Washington wasn’t perfect. And if someone writes an article that picks some nits with George Washington, I’m not going to automatically label him or her as anti-American. That’s how the goofballs of the Left think. But not here. We all graduated from Kindergarten.

      • ladykrystyna says:

        Well said, Brad. I concur (as you can see below).

        I have no problem with constructive criticism of our country or it’s Founders.

        It’s the lies, the twisting of the truths, and the ad hominem attacks that I cannot abide.

    • RobL_V2 RobL_V2 says:

      Welcome Molon,

      I didn’t defend MLK because I didn’t think he was attacked. MLK’s record speaks for itself, it those who are taking MLK words for their own who Voltaire is attacking.

    • ladykrystyna says:

      I’m going to go with Brad’s assessment here and say:

      I see it like this – the Truth will set us free. Or, as our site says “Facts are stubborn things.”

      We can’t erase the fact that our country was founded with slavery intact and that some of our own Founders, including Jefferson who drafted the Declaration, were slave owners. That we fought with Indians for good or ill. That there were Jim Crow laws and segregation in the South.

      But we don’t do anyone any good IGNORING it. We can acknowledge it while also putting it in its proper historical context. And show how we fought against those things and won.

      The way I always see it is that our Founders were not saints, they were not perfect, but they were WISE.

      And that can be seen because Jefferson, the slave owners, own words were used to help free the slaves and later to do away with segregation.

      If Jefferson were a real racist, with no hope of redemption, he would have written “all white men are created equal”. And yet he did not.

      Same with MLK – the man was no saint; I’ve seen many acknowledge his flaws, including the plagiarism and the infidelity and the communist influence. And yet, no matter, he fought for civil rights the best way – peacefully. He let the racists expose themselves for what they were on national TV such that the rest of America would see it and acknowledge it and not ignore it.

      If he had other agendas, then so be it. If he had not been killed, we could have addressed those.

      I frankly think that despite those other allged agendas, I don’t think he’d be very happy to see where blacks are today, their victimhood, their statistics, the race baiting, etc. I could be wrong, but I don’t think that is where he was going. I think that happened after he got killed and Jackson and company took over.

      That’s just my 2 cents on the subject. We can’t hide from the truth, or dress it up like a pig with lipstick.

      Facts are stubborn things. They must be acknowledged and dealt with, even if it’s about someone we like. I have no problem with constructive criticism, only ad hominem attacks. And certain Monsieur Voltaire’s article contained no ad hominem attacks. Just a statement of facts and his opinion on the subject.

      • CCWriter CCWriter says:

        Krystyna, I can hardly add anything to what you said here.

        I will just point out that making distinctions is a very important thing if one’s real allegiance is to the truth, and I saw M. Voltaire’s article and the comments to it as making some very good distinctions. One of the things we have the luxury of doing here at StubbornThings is to lay them all out and read them carefully and think about them and kick them around and learn from each other– without being snowed under and distracted by trolls.

        • ladykrystyna says:

          Thank, CC.

          “One of the things we have the luxury of doing here at StubbornThings is to lay them all out and read them carefully and think about them and kick them around and learn from each other– without being snowed under and distracted by trolls.”

          I think you are exactly correct.

      • molon labe molon labe says:

        I’m thinking going with Brad’s assessment may be best on this site. Lest you be labeled a uh bs Leftist. Or worse, a Troll.

        • CCWriter CCWriter says:

          I’m not so sure about that. I disagree with him openly on certain subjects. It’s all here to be seen in the comments.

        • ladykrystyna says:

          You can disagree, but terms like “toxic” and especially “racist” are just tools that leftists use to shut down the conversation.

          How about just pointing us to evidence that MLK was not really a communist?

  10. Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

    By the way, you might have noticed, I’m not Rich Lowry. I stand behind my writers. Even if I don’t always agree with them, this whole friggin’ culture is becoming fascistic in thought. It’s full of people becoming outraged at the smallest of things, seemingly an acquired habit.

    Right now I would say blacks are victims of misplaced white guilt and gutless “good intentions,” or what George Bush (one of the smarter things he said) called “the soft bigotry of low expectations.”

    Here at StubbornThings we recently had an interesting conversation about the moral and intellectual shortcomings of the Madison/Jefferson coalition (and there were shortcomings with the Washington/Adams/Hamilton Federalist side as well). And you know what? No one accused anyone of hating America, the Founders, or the Constitution.

    These are all men. The same with MLK. He’s not the only black activist there has ever been. He is not automatically free from scrutiny.

    One of the most pernicious things in our culture right now (besides PC threats to free speech) is the rewriting of history by the Left. It is (or should be) taken for granted that we need to go back and examine anything and not take the “official” PC view.

    I think we do a disservice to MLK if we treat him as some sort of Roman Emperor who has declared himself a god and thus no one dares say a word against his divinity. MLK did not, of course, do that. But others have.

    I’m reading a book on Andrew Jackson right now. And I can tell you, this man wasn’t a god either. But he did some good things. But will all of you freak out when I say that he also owned slaves? That he kinda-sorta ran off with another man’s wife? That he was a man of violent temper who liked to duel? That quite possibly instead of being the “man of the people” that is his legend that he was simply a man who portrayed himself that way as a path to power?

    I love this country. I hold it as obvious that any good thing is flawed, but usually the flaws are not the idea but the people involved. So I’m just never going to approach Martin Luther King Jr. as some kind of untouchable demigod. We do a disservice to his humanity if we do so.

    I think one of the finest letters written is his “Letter from a Birmingham Jail.” It is full of the vision and words of a very descent and wise man. But he also had orgies with women. That’s just a fact. And he most likely palled around with Communists.

    Monsieur Voltaire’s starting premise was that he thought MLK had been turned into a saint. And so he has. But in America, we don’t canonize people. We might put them on our currency, mold them in bronze, or sculpt them in marble. But we don’t put halos on their heads.

    Another inconvenient truth is that the modern “civil rights movement,” as enacted into law by the Democrats, has actually set the black man back, at least if you measure by the disintegration of the black family and sense of grievance. This is another factor that Monsieur Voltaire pointed out. That has nothing to do with MLK, per se. But it does have something to do with creating myths that simply smudge over the reality and thus can keep us from dealing with that reality. And much of the reality of the modern “civil rights movement” is a curse on this nation.

    Blacks and whites should walk hand-in-hand against bigotry, but that also includes politically correct bigotry and myth-making (such as that Jesse Jackson is anything but a racial huckster, along with Al Sharpton). Surely the only path to getting along isn’t to create myths.

    I like MLK. I think he was a great and brave man. But he wasn’t perfect.

    • ladykrystyna says:

      Beautifully said, Brad.

      “Here at StubbornThings we recently had an interesting conversation about the moral and intellectual shortcomings of the Madison/Jefferson coalition (and there were shortcomings with the Washington/Adams/Hamilton Federalist side as well). And you know what? No one accused anyone of hating America, the Founders, or the Constitution.”

      Wait until I get you my review on Mark Levin’s book and, hopefully, get a discussion started about his proposed Amendments (and any we’d like to add).

      The great thing about our Founders and this country is that we could verbally duke things out without it turning into an actual war, except for the Civil War. Of course I know there were some ridiculous things said during some campaigns, even early on, but still. We got a Declaration drafted, a revolution fought and won and a Constitution, all without throwing verbal bombs all over the place.

      Facts ARE stubborn things. The more people understand and accept that, the better world this will be.

  11. molon labe molon labe says:

    Let me ask this of the ‘founders’. Well, I guess there is one ‘Founder’ Bradley who just by force of insult can appear to threaten banning when a Con steps over his line. There is a lot of “our blog” talk though… Your rhetoric is fine, though Brad. Accusing me of ‘BS Leftist techniques’. How low can I deliver my blows back to you, pal? It is your site after all. You make this out to be the site for NRO refugees. So a Conservative dissenter opposes an article and gets shouted down by the Founder(et al). That what this site is about? What next? Banning me? Hmmm. Oop. Someone else calls me a Troll. You stand with her ladyk? Rob? I’m hearing/feeling shoutdown. The Founder is ticked. And he makes the rules.

    Let me pose an issue of fundamental blogging ethics that you need to address. Or maybe you don’t since you make the rules. Ladyk protested my lack of professionalism & civility on NRO today after I saw the site address posted ON NRO for the umpteenth time. Not a secret. Well, here’s the rub, you’re all NRO refugees & protesters who continually comment on NRO. Cake & eat, no? Is it to free advertise? Or will you um eventually wean yourselves from the Mother Ship? And, is this Civil Professionalism for a bunch of bloggers to free advertise on NRO that stubbornthings.org is for those who are tired of NRO? Just asking, since you’re also saying open Conservative discussion is welcome. If this issue of Ethics ain’t about Conservatism, what is?

    I just watched RR at the Ceremony for MLK day. Nope, not a Commie.

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      …who by force of insult can threaten banning when a Con steps over his line.

      Now you’re playing the victim card? After just having played the PC race card against Voltaire? Again, good god, grow the hell up, Molon Labe. I didn’t threaten to ban you. I simply castigated you for the PC garbage you threw at Voltaire.

      So a Conservative dissenter opposes an article and gets shouted down by the Founder(et al).

      Monsieur Voltaire is one of the most thoughtful people I know. And I simply won’t stand by while his reputation is besmirched.

      You’re free to post here, but you’re not free from having your BS called BS. Sorry, that’s the way it works. And if you want to portray yourself as a victim, then do so. You’re entitled to your opinion, and so am I. You can quite literally tell me to fuck off and you won’t be banned.

      But you will be banned if you become little more than a whiny troll.

      And, is this Civil Professionalism for a bunch of bloggers to free advertise on NRO that stubbornthings.org

      There is something more important than “civil professionalism.” It’s standing up for your friends when they are being unfairly besmirched. And I did.

      You simply got called on your BS, Molon Labe, and now you’re doing what most people do and that’s trying to rationalize that it’s someone else’s fault. The other Founders here tell me that you are a smart fellow with generally good conservative opinions. Please show that this is so.

      • molon labe molon labe says:

        You keep coming back with rhetoric that I won’t use not just because it’s your site. Accusing me of using the Victim Card is bs particularly when you then patronize me about my Con credentials – oh and then you wave the banning the whiny troll flag. I’m just trying to see what kinda site this is. Still waiting to see what THE Founder’s Ethical take is on pimping for Blog hits at NRO by commenting about what a lousy site NRO is while commenting there… then posting the stubbornthings address. The little ‘f’ founders are doing that you know. Maybe you are too, and I just don’t know your stage name there. Good Conservative Ethical threshold question. For a blog Founder. And the founders. This ain’t Trolling. Nor whining.

        • Kung Fu Zu says:

          I am neither a founder or troll. But I did advertise this site once or possibly twice on NRO because I found the level of discourse here far superior to that at NRO. I also advised the founders to do the same as it might get people away from the nonsense that NRO has become.

          Still waiting to see what THE Founder’s Ethical take is on pimping for Blog hits at NRO by commenting about what a lousy site NRO is while commenting there…”

          Please explain why it is unethical to go to site which has seen better days and where numerous bloggers have complained about how the site has changed and no longer serves their interest, and offer a new option which may better serve the users’ needs and expectations?

        • ladykrystyna says:

          But you did play the victim card and you did besmirch Monsieur Voltaire and, frankly the rest of us, by calling what was said here “toxic” and “racist”.

          And while you kind of gave a bit of background as to why you THINK that way, you never provided any evidence to prove that what MV said was actually toxic and racist.

    • CCWriter CCWriter says:

      “Let me ask this of the ‘founders’. Well, I guess there is one ‘Founder’ Bradley who just by force of insult can appear to threaten banning when a Con steps over his line. There is a lot of “our blog” talk though…”

      Actually this site has five founders. Brad did the lion’s share of the work setting up the website. The overall policy is a group effort as was the idea to start it. You were invited to come here and register to comment because we prefer an honest open discussion.

      You think you have been called a troll? Perhaps you just need to read more carefully. If we considered you a troll, if you had engaged in truly trollish behavior the likes of which we see certain people doing on NRO (hofstader, jukeboxgrad, those guys are who we mean by trolls), you would have been banned already. You could make yourself into a troll but that would be up to you.

      Meanwhile, I don’t get why you think you have been banned or threatened with banning. You can say what you want to say here if you back it up. If we don’t agree with it we’ll say so. And if you don’t agree with that that you can say so. We don’t need to call people names or other nonsense, just have some good give and take. That’s how grownups operate. Welcome to a site for grownups.

      • ladykrystyna says:

        “You can say what you want to say here if you back it up. If we don’t agree with it we’ll say so. And if you don’t agree with that that you can say so. We don’t need to call people names or other nonsense, just have some good give and take. That’s how grownups operate. Welcome to a site for grownups.”

        Exactly. I’m happy to be told that I’m wrong, with backup to support that.

        I’m not happy to be called “toxic” and “racist”.

    • ladykrystyna says:

      Frankly, I’ve moved on since, but if you want to discuss, let’s (I’ve got the gift of the gab both by mouth and by posting, so be warned 😀 ).

      I thought your post was unprofessional and lacked civility for 2 reasons:

      1. It was regarding a non-NRO article on another site

      and, most importantly,

      2. You described the article as “toxic” and racist, and then kind of questioned my integrity by stating: “You don’t agree with that stuff, LadyK… I know you don’t.” And you did this in full view of NRO trolls (one of which jumped on the bandwagon [even though you rebuked him] and I’m sure he’s running off to his fellow minions, cackling with delight.).

      I found that last reason to be the most egregious because you impugned the site based on one article and you impugned my integrity and honor by making it look like I’m hanging out at Stormfront. And all without providing any evidence to back your claims of racism and toxicity.

      “Ladyk protested my lack of professionalism & civility on NRO today after I saw the site address posted ON NRO for the umpteenth time. Not a secret.”

      I’m advertising, dear. That doesn’t open me up, or this site, or anyone associated with it, to an defamatory attack on another site. You didn’t need to tell me you saw the site and then make such a comment. You could have done what you finally did – register and post your problems with the article here.

      And know that if you post something, especially with the words “toxic” and “racist” in it, you’re going to get some, ahem, feedback.

      Your basic point seems to be that MLK did so much good that no one can criticize him and we need to walk on eggshells when talking about him and not bring up any communist ties, or his plagierism or his infidelity.

      If you have evidence that shows that his communist ties were weak then feel free to provide. And we’ll be happy to discuss.

      But you don’t get to call us and our site racist and toxic without having to nut up. I’m sorry, but that kind of response does appear to be “leftist” to the rest of us.

      I personally, have no problem with people providing constructive criticism about people on our side. I have a problem with hyperbolic statements and ad hominem attacks.

      • molon labe molon labe says:

        There’s simply no evidence that MLK was a Marxist. The continuing attempts to diminish him here in that unsupportable manner are yes Toxic. I said, ‘the ‘R’ word comes to mind’. Because you folks are so eager to diminish MLK & quick to put him in his place – yes the ‘R’ word does come to mind. So my opinion of you is now changed. Diminish Al Sharpton. Jesse J etal. Fine. You’re making unsupported statements out of thin air as though they are facts. There’s no evidence whatsoever that MLK was a Marxist – as was averred here and never refuted. These claims by Cons need to be repudiated by Cons. Repeat it all you want – as I’m repeating the refutation. Burden of proof is on the accusation.

        If you’re gonna go on NRO to attack it, blithely post regular comments, attack some more, all with the intention of advertising this site, there’s an Ethical issue there, DEAR. That no Founder nor founder has addressed (a distinction Bradley will have to explain to you). You don’t see that? Why not. Why wouldn’t the Troll in question see the address on his own? Why advertise on NRO? Aren’t they um in disrepute? Isn’t that truly pimping NRO? I’m with you on the frustration with NRO. I’m at the point of leaving & never returning. But going there to criticize the place & to recruit readers for here… One thing to criticize & leave. Ya’ll have entered new Un-Conservative Ethical territory.

        • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

          f you’re gonna go on NRO to attack it, blithely post regular comments, attack some more, all with the intention of advertising this site, there’s an Ethical issue there, DEAR. That no Founder nor founder has addressed (a distinction Bradley will have to explain to you). You don’t see that?

          Please try not to be condescending to LadyK. She is, after all, a lady and a smart one as well.

          If Rich Lowry or Jonah Goldberg do not want us advertising this non-profit site that generally is IN LOVE with many of their authors (or, at least, their opinions), then he is free to do so.

          But whatever the case may be, I will continue to praise NRO when I think it is due and scold them when I think they deserve it.

          And blogs/sites cross-pollinating by talking about each other is a pretty basic thing, although it’s probably not possible for a gnat (us) to cross-pollinate with an elephant (NRO). We are nothing compared to them.

          Or maybe not. Truth means something. Right now our country is confused, bewildered, and bankrupt. We need to start focussing. I would love it if NRO would get their tight focus back on conservatism. But we are a sick country right now, and that disease has spread itself all over.

          I wish nothing but the best for NRO. But there seems to be this really odd notion that you have, Labe, that to criticize something is to wish it ill. You took the same approach to MLK, projecting your own intentions onto Voltaire and doing the same regarding the various criticisms of NRO here.

          I can guaranteed you one thing, NRO doesn’t care. We are nothing compared to them. But I will also tell you that I love Jonah Goldberg (even though I am often highly critical of him). But these are mere family fights, a fraternal brawl, if you will (not that he has ever hit back or even knows or cares who the hell I am).

          But that site has some good up-and-comers. I really like Kevin Williamson, Tanner, and what’s-his-name….the other libertarian guy…oh, yeah, Cooke. I think a couple of them need to ripen a little in terms of conservatism, but these are good men.

          But, geez, haven’t you noticed all the RINOs? Rich, I’ll work for you for free it you need a virtual RINO hunter to go on safari for you.

          But until that day comes, we’ll do our thing here. We’ll wish NRO the best and hope that they don’t mind this pesky gnat. But they need to understand that they’ve lost their sense of direction and that, at least in the comments section, it has become pointless and chaotic.

        • Kung Fu Zu says:

          I suspect that MV will respond to you when he has time, but let me make a few observations.

          Bayard Rustin was a close associate of King’s and helped found the SCLC. Rustin had belonged to the Young Communist League. He resigned but later joined the Socialist Party of America. To bring about the 1963 march on Washington, he cooperated with A. Philip Randolph, who was the most powerful African American labor union leader and a socialist.

          King studied under Myles Horton an avowed socialist and believer in “economic and social justice”, who founded the Highlander Folk School which openly stated part of its mission was to teach radicals to change the States. Another founder of this school was Don West, another avowed socialist who was only not a communist as he didn’t carry a membership card.

          I believe Jack O’Dell, another of King’s colleagues, was a member of the National Committee of the Communist Party of the USA in 1962. I can’t recall if he was with the SCLC or NAACP. In any case, he had joined the party in the 1940’s or 1950’s.

          The CPUSA’s newspaper “The Worker” openly declared the King’s 1st March on Washington to be a communist project.

          Stanley Levison another adviser and colleague of King’s had been a leader in the CPUSA but resigned. Many communists resigned their memberships as to go undercover. (Look at the history of the 1920’s, 1930′ and 1940’s as regards communist espionage in the USA government.) After he resigned from the party he continued to make monetary contributions to it.

          There is substantial documented evidence that Soviet Union decided as early as in the 1920’s to use the racial divide in the USA as a tool to help weaken the USA.

          King biographer, David Garrow states, “King privately described himself as a Marxist”.

          Garrow further maintains King said the following in SCLC staff meetings, “we have moved into a new era which must be an era of revolution…the whole structure of the American life must be changed…we are engaged in the class struggle.”

          This information is easily confirmed on the internet. I haven’t even begun to look more deeply into it. But a man’s associations certainly say a lot about him. Whether you think Marxist is an incorrect term or not, there is no double that King had very intimate associations with the Far Left.

          There is an old saying which I believe to be appropriate in such cases, “if you lay down with dogs, you get up with flees”

  12. molon labe molon labe says:

    I’ve only been here 5 mins and I’ve already provoked a Founders crisis. Brad surely said:
    I am THE founder. Then: I stand behind my writers.

    • ladykrystyna says:

      There is no Founders crisis. We’re all fine here.

      I just can’t understand how someone can call someone else “toxic” and “racist” and then not expect a backlash because of it?

      • molon labe molon labe says:

        For the record I said ‘the ‘R’ word comes to mind – based on the collective unseemly unnecessary attempt to diminish MLK as a Marxist etc. When I wanna say Racist I’ll say it. I didn’t. Who’s playing the victim card now? Where’s Bradley? He may need to defend a little ‘f’ founder. What was the gang tackling of MLK on this thread all about? Oh, you’ll remind me that you take all the Founders down here too.

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      Neither will you be banned merely for being a little twerp, Molon Labe. The actual sequence of events that occurred was me and CC put our two heads together and thought there might be some merit to putting together a web site. And then we brought in some others.

      And then I paid for it and did 99.5% of the work. I make decisions on what to publish and how this site looks. We’re all in this together, but there are practical aspects to who does what. And right now all I see is someone with a big or bruised ego who is looking to get banned just so he can go and tell all his friends what a rotten place StubbornThings is and how you are a noble victim.

      The thing is, I’ve been around the internet a time or two. If you want to get back into my good graces and start over, then just please donate $20.00 to the FRAXA Research Foundation (the article at the very top) and we’ll call bygones bygones. We’ll start over again. But, please, don’t play me for a fool.

      • molon labe molon labe says:

        You can take the little twerp thing and stuff it, Chelsea. That’s about the third gauntlet you’ve thrown down. NOT a serious man. I called ladyk dear after she said same. NOT a serious person. I said calling MLK a Marxist made the ‘R’ word come to mind. The digging the site Founders continue to do on this issue well, continues. We’re talking MLK not Post-MLK. So there’s a long dubious list of dubious nutbags who will testify to his Marxism. MLK was good enough for RR & for Goldwater AND every other Republican figure since. But not here. And probably not for Ron Paul.

        The ethical issue which you choose to ignore is that you’d NEVER tolerate a commenter here who comes to criticize stubbornthings and post his own blog as the alternative. Justify it all you want. I don’t think you’re gonna tolerate much more of me on this issue. Or on the Ethical conundrum call-out. Which are my only quibbles to pick. But they’re significant – and the way you’ve reacted to them compounds them. Not your finest moments. NRO of course is unaware of what you’re doing in their comment threads. Cheesy low rent stuff.

        So you got your first guy – a Con – who comes here and makes some waves. All I read from the Founders on ALL the threads is, “Oh bravo Bradley, old chap!”; “Ladyk, another one out of the park!”; “CC, you da one!” Self licking ice cream cone? A Con comes here to defend MLK from the scurrilous charge that he was a Marxist – and you people say I have to prove he was NOT!?! And literally every Founder is up in arms in unison. Name calling. I’m a victim for noting it, but you’re all righteously indignant that I note a whiff of ‘R’ in a scurrilous baseless charge that you’ll read NO reputable Conservative writer make.

        I think the Founders are facing their first Conservative challenge on a single solitary issue of decency. Well, two now. And they don’t like it. So let’s call the guy a twerp or a bs Leftist. Over to you Chelsea. Or ladyk – dear. Go ahead, make your bones on this issue. MLK the Marxist. Solidarity. Not auspicious.

        You’ve been around the internet a time or two. Credentials time. Pass. I’ll donate anyway. Your good graces… stuff ’em.

        Ban me? Yeah, that’s a tricky one. Shoes on the other foot. I just came here to say that accusations of MLK & Marxism are whacked & shameful. Baseless things no Con should say. And maybe eventually comment on other stuff. Or maybe not. What a dilemma. Knock off the name calling Chelsea. You won’t find THAT on NRO from the editors. Or ban me.

        • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

          Molon, I heard that you had a good conservative mind. Seriously. But all you seem to want to do is pitch a fit. You got caught acting like a Leftist in regards to equating criticism of MLK with something far worse than the issues at hand, as if it was the old “code word” nostrum that we usually get from the Left.

          What are you doing here? This site is meant for the discussion of conservative/old-style libertarian things and not just to continue the mindless rants that had chased many of us away from NRO.

          So make up your mind. Are your going to maintain this “oh, poor little me” attitude or are you going to engage the issues? And I find it somewhat difficult to believe that you are a conservative if you take criticism of MLK as latent racism and stuff like that. I just don’t get that. Don’t we get enough of that from the Left?

          But everyone makes mistakes. I’ve made a ton of my own and have been booted out of at least two places before. And I didn’t like it. So my inclination is to talk through an issue rather than play the Little Napoleon that so many twerp-like site owners are, just itching to use their god-like deletion powers.

          But that’s not me. We’re not here for fame, fortune, or honors. We’re here to bring a little awareness to the important issues of the day and show how seeing these issues through a conservative/old-style libertarian lens is the best solution.

          I’m not here to bitch. I’m not here to pick fights, although I will hold my own if necessary. Rome is burning and it becomes counterproductive to fight amongst ourselves.

          So let’s start again. Submit an article regarding a subject that you feel passionate about and that is generally conservative/old-style-libertarian in perspective and that you think would be of benefit to others. Your job is to out-Jonah Jonah, which isn’t that hard these days. Rome is burning. What would be your rhetorical fire extinguisher for the citizens of this republic?

          This site isn’t about battling it out in the comments section. So I’ll make you a deal. You follow through on the donation and I’ll mentally wipe my own slate clean. But if you’re just going to go around with a chip on your shoulder, that’s just not going to work.

  13. Monsieur Voltaire says:

    Wow, I get offline for a few days, and look what happens!

    I have responded directly in another article.

  14. Pingback: Further Thoughts on MLK's "I Have a Dream" Speech | StubbornThings.orgStubbornThings.org

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