On MLK Day, the Question Is…

Which Dr. King do you honor today? The one who said that white Americans had betrayed their professed commitment to ethicality and equality — and that the country had bounced a check to black folks, which black folks were coming to cash — or the bland and sanitized apostle of color-blindness sold to you by the media? Which Dr. King?

The one who said that America had become the “greatest purveyor of violence in the world,” or the whitewashed infantilized proponent of pacifistic forgiveness in the face of oppression and brutality, made popular by a culture uninterested in accuracy or truth?

Which Dr. King do we honor? The one who said “private charity is no substitute for public justice,” or the milquetoast advocate of abstract “service” and volunteerism peddled by colleges, universities, high schools, church groups and the non-profit industrial complex?

Sadly, I know which one most of our elected officials honor. Which is why they ought not darken the door of any King commemoration at all, so great is their hypocrisy, their venal disregard for the legacy upon which they trample every day they draw breath.

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