Your title suggests that Martin Luther King was somehow coming around to a position of condoning…
Svetlana Voreskova
1139

What most interests me about this article is how folks in the comments who want to critique it, claim an almost expert regard for MLK that also misses the mark; he still mostly exists in terms of what Cornel West calls Santa Clausification. So no, by the end of his life, MLK did not endorse violence, but he most certainly developed a strong, clear indictment of whiteness and white supremacy. In the speech that the author cites, MLK called it revolutionary that black folk began to recognize that the morals and philosophy of white society were “in all too many respects […] degenerate and profane.” The MLK of these comments rejects such radical claims. Instead, the comments attack the author for suggesting a version of King that distorts him while doing the same. While King did not castigate the young black radicals calling for “Black Power,” the folks in these comments critique today’s version of it in his name. Though King did not agree with the methods being advanced by young black radicals, he was certainly willing to sit down with them (which is one way to read the claims of the article’s author about violence). He wanted to establish a middle-ground between them. For King, this middle-ground was aggressive civil disobedience (see the 9/1/67 speech).

Some of the comments directed at the author of this essay and in defense of one of the author’s of the comments are downright racist. Any person who uses MLK to defend claims castigating black civil rights participation while extolling white superiority are perversions of history.

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