I remember as a teenager when MLK was shot. I never actually thought he was anything special then, but I was just a dumbass teenager too.
While his personal life and true political convictions may or still may not be clear, his publicized reputation for non-violent protest as a means to change social perception and established law has meant something for this country.
However, it is a true shame that the leftover friends, colleagues and aspirants of his era since then have perverted the perceived message of non-violence. Perverted to extortion in many cases ala Jesse Jackson and corporate America.
Almost every town and city in America now has a street named for him: MLK Blvd, MLK Avenue, etc. Most having been largely cajoled/shamed on town and city officials as a concession to black constituents to honor him, the resulting legacy of this honor is to alert white people of areas from which to avoid at all costs. A sad legacy, indeed.
I must have 'mis-remembered' or misunderstood his evolution into Anti-American, anti-war, anti-wealth and the threats of a 'hot summer'.
Boy (if I dare use that term on this holy of holy days), am I glad I got straightened out. Who knew the NYT, Wash Post et al were a lying bunch of racists back then. Guess I can throw out my annual news almanacs and get with the program.
kumbaya, I shall not be moved.