Skip to comments.MARTIN LUTHER KING, CONSERVATIVE?
Posted on 01/21/2013 5:02:56 PM PST by SeekAndFind
Im confused. I hear there is some kind of celebration of a black leader going on in Washington today, Martin Luther King Jrs birthday, except that its somebody else. I think Ill skip whoever this poser may be, and celebrate Dr. King instead for his conservative principles.
Scott writes movingly below about Kings prophetic gifts and courage, and rightly so. I appended a brief note about how Kings Letter from the Birmingham Jail contains a short treatise about natural law that is a serious difficulty and deep embarrassment for todays liberals, who wish to acknowledge and empower nothing higher than an individuals own will:
One may well ask: How can you advocate breaking some laws and obeying others? The answer lies in the fact that there are two types of laws: just and unjust. I would be the first to advocate obeying just laws. One has not only a legal but a moral responsibility to obey just laws. Conversely, one has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws. I would agree with St. Augustine that an unjust law is no law at all.
Now, what is the difference between the two? How does one determine whether a law is just or unjust? A just law is a man-made code that squares with the moral law or the law of God. An unjust law is a code that is out of harmony with the moral law. To put it in the terms of St. Thomas Aquinas: An unjust law is a human law that is not rooted in eternal law and natural law.
In addition, as with his I Have a Dream Speech in Washington in 1963, King in Birmingham called for America to live up to its principles and promises, rather than attacking Americas principles and promises as fraudulent like Obamas long-time pastor Rev. Jeremiah Wright, or most other Zinn-Chomsky style leftists today. (Interesting, by the way, that a Southern Baptist preacher would invoke the Roman Catholic figures Augustine and Aquinas in this argument.)
People forget these conservative and deeply American strains to Kings message. At the time of his death he was contending against the Black Panthers and the more radical fringe of the New Left (even as he turned against Vietnam and started saying dodgy things about socialism). I cant agree with the move toward a kind of Black Nationalism, King told the New York Times in a cautiously worded criticism of Stokely Carmichael. Kings murder swung events toward radicalism. Washington DC civil rights leader Julius Hobson, for example, argued that The next black man who comes into the black community preaching non-violence should be violently dealt with by the black people who hear him. The Martin Luther King concept of nonviolence died with him.
On Saturday, CNN took note of the fact that many conservatives consider King a hero. And look at who they quote:
He was against all policies based on race, says Peter Schramm, a conservative historian. The basis of his attack on segregation was judge us by the content of our character, not by the color of our skin. Thats a profound moral argument.
Go Peter! (By the way, theres almost no one, except perhaps Peter Myers, who can express the full greatness of Frederick Douglass better than Peter.) And see also more of this tribute from Human Events. I suspect if there were a rigorous content analysis done of who invokes which parts of King, youd find conservatives cite Kings thought much more than liberals, who only invoke his out-of-focus image and legacy. In this respect, Clarence Thomas is the real heir to King todaynot Jesse Jackson or Obama.
The late Rev. King had a mix of philosophy, both orthodox (classical liberal, which we would cal conservative) and especially in later years, dabbling in socialism. Socialism is what you get when you have a theology based on service without a very definite God to serve.
RE: dabbling in socialism
So, the answer to the question in the title :
MARTIN LUTHER KING, CONSERVATIVE?,
is NO. He was in fact, a FISCAL liberal.
What about his SOCIAL policies? Would he be for abortion and gay marriage? Being socialist, would he be for tax payer funding of Planned Parenthood and Sandra Fluke’s demands?
Definitely a mix, but certainly NOT a Conservative. Those who say so are cherry picking quotes.
He was a communist tool!
It’s difficult to say if his mercurial personality would have gone far enough to embrace that, or if he would have viewed it as undignified. It’s moot; what we have to work with is what he left us with.
EXACTLY!! He was a communist street organizer just like O’dumbass, he just wasn’t a gay one.
Despite what King said about judging people by the content of their character, I’m unconvinced that he came even close to being a conservative. He badmouthed the soldiers fighting in Vietnam, addressed the leftist “New Politics” conference in 1967, and seemed to be moving left at the time of his assassination.
RE: He badmouthed the soldiers fighting in Vietnam
Did he give any opinion about the Vietnam Communists who were responsible for the refugees and the killing fields of Cambodia?
I would make the case that, outside of his embrace of Islam, that Malcolm X was much more conservative than King, he advocated blacks taking care of themselves and not waiting for liberal handouts.
Dr. King was not promoting abortion or gay marriage in the 1960’s and when Jesse Jackson moved in on his mantle of leadership in the 70’s, he didn’t push those ideas either.
King was inspired by liberal theologian Paul Tillich and surrounded by left-wing Communist characters during the late 50’s and 60’s from Harry Belafonte to Hunter Pitts (Jack) O’Dell, Bayard Rustin and so on.
King’s biggest problem (and he knew it) was the sexual misconduct. One biography speaks of three women he has long term relationships with other than his wife and its been published and reported numerous times that MLK frequented prostitutes including two of them at a time..
Dr. King was ashamed of what he did, but didn’t find a way out before he died in 1968 and became a symbol of greatness and a hero in the eyes of many people.
The irony is that it was the Vietnam Communists that ousted Pol Pot in 1979....Cambodia was aligned with the ChiComs, while the Vietnamese were in the Soviet camp, and hated the Chinese.
And your point is exactly what?
No mortal being worthy of reverencing, treating them as though they need to be is beyond sensible discussion.
Simply put like Ghandi King knew he could not lead his people to a military victory over Western man. Therefore, he looked into the soul of the Westerner and saw a great empty place filled only by eating, drinking, drugging, copulating, evacuating the bowels and snoring. Thus by simple Potemkin like measures King easily obtained the victory finalized by the election of the current occupant of the White House. All that is left to do is the consolidation of the conquest then the real raping and looting can begin.
Dr King, like many great leaders was a flawed man. History is full of them. Our Founding Fathers were great but also flawed men. I believe it’s what one does to better society in spite of those flaws that make men great. Dr King fought and rightfully so for the equality of all people in this country. It cost him his life. But we as a nation are far better for his fight.
He was no conservative, and can only be decribed as being less radical than the second wave of revolutionary Marxist liberation theologian.
Many sublime quotes are attributed to Dr. King, but my favorite (after “content of character”) is the following:
“In the End, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.”
— Martin Luther King Jr.
You’ll surely get filthed here for not being cynical enough, for not crowing that surely King had in mind the present debauchery even if he never penned or spoke of such an aspiration.
King was an extremely flawed man and nobody has the information to project to what in fact is moot. God used the circumstances of a man bent on murder to call King home when He did. That ended the story of his life. What others choose to falsely exploit the story for, is not King’s fault.
I was trying to tell the whole story of MLK without turning him into some sort of god.
A lot of people here in PA revere Joe Paterno as a diety inspite of the Sandusky scandal.
Paterno did a lot of good things, but made some mistakes along the way.
The story of King comes out that way in my mind.
God has a plan and its a lot more important than personalities.