Tuesday, January 17, 2017
Sobering thoughts from Dr. King
Here is a rather sobering video from the Reverend Doctor. It seems that toward the end of his life he was becoming increasingly aware that the fight to end poverty and unjust war was a million times more difficult than the fight to change a few formal discriminatory laws in the Jim Crow South. Ironically, it seems that where Malcolm X became a bit more reformist, tolerant, and even optimistic in his last year (which in turn earned him a death sentence from his old, intolerant colleagues), Martin Luther King Junior seems to have veered Leftward, becoming more radical and necessarily less optimistic. This too earned him death, from those who wanted the status quo preserved. Malcolm and Martin began to converge from their different ends of the spectrum.
I don't see Dr. King too hopeful in this video, and I believe that if he were alive today, he would sadly acknowledge how prescient his pessimism was. We are on the tails of a pretty depressing year, heading into the dawn of a new age of racism and systemic oppression under a new president. The guns of war still entice too many, and the war on poverty is replaced by a spiteful war on the poor.