Tuesday, February 1, 2011

CAN CONSERVATIVE WHITE PEOPLE LIKE MARTIN LUTHER KING JR.?


This has been on my mind a lot lately, mostly because I saw a segment on FOXNEWS with Al Sharpton and Bill O'Reilly battling this very topic. I get all my information from FOX and my opinions flow from the vein of FOX conservative personalities. Just an FYI. That was sarcasm wingbats. Anyway, I was struck by the way Al channeled so many of MLK's thoughts like Whoopi Goldberg in Ghost. Martin Luther King has been dead for 47 years and yet Al knew his thoughts and what he would say about current issues if he were alive today. Amazing. I had no idea that Al Sharpton saw dead people. Perhaps he and Haley Joel Osment could get together and have a party with Oingo Boingo. The point is, don't speak for dead people.
Al Sharpton was all bent because Glenn Beck invoked some of MLK's principles in some march on Washington a few months back. I guess I should be more informed about it, but I just don't care to be. Let's just say that it was a big deal and according to Al, Martin would have been mortified to know a conservative white male invoked a portion of his philosophy. It isn't shocking to know that the left thinks that we are still in the 1960's fighting for civil rights but let's just let them stay there and rest for a while. It is however 2011 and much progress has been made.
I don't claim to be an expert on MLK or his philosophy. I do admire his "I Have a Dream" speech. Poetry and truth always flow well especially when delivered by a gifted orator. In the little research I have done on Martin, Obama was to a certain degree trying to be a TYPE of the leaders persona. Both men believe in the distribution of wealth for social betterment and often Obama tries to mimic Dr. King's oration methods. The problem is that being President to white people and not just advocating for minority groups makes it difficult to adhere to a pure Dr. King ideology. Though I don't think Dr. King would be as bigoted as some are in so-called "black leadership" today. I think Jesse, Al and a few others are dangerously off the Dr. King path. They promote superiority by touting a racial-centric cause and are as racist as Jim Crow. And I say that as a conservative white female who hates all people and not just some. Now that's equality.
I'm not sure when Dr. King's ideas became the Democratic party platform, but it was part of a movement in the 1960's and the 2 married and had babies. To me it is difficult to reconcile the advocacy for human rights through pacifism all while demeaning the United States effort to rid the world of communism, the grand daddy of all oppression. Free our people, but do it nicely is not part of my genetic make up. Dr. King was very anti-war and more specifically anti Viet Nam war. Somewhat hypocritical to demand equality in the states and yet against US intervention to save a nation from Ho Chi Minh a brutal dictator. So the Viet Namese don't deserve the same civil rights? MLK went so far as to say that the US was an "occupying" force in Viet Nam. Sound familiar? So many zombie hippies regurgitating stupid statements. But this does not define the Doctors work. He should be known and honored for his exceptional advocacy for ALL in this United States, the leader in freedom and equality.
Though Dr. King was stringently a socialist, I do admire his work as a civil rights leader. I don't agree with all of his philosophies but does that mean we should throw out the baby with the bath water? Now that Obama has landed on the lap of Ronald Reagan am I to assume that he is now a conservative? I am pretty sure O is still a left leaning wingnut attempting to be an in the middle Democrat...with an appreciation of Ronald. Nothing more.
I find it arrogant and ego-centric to stake claim on any historical figure in America. I am an American and I can honor or despise who I want. If I want to honor Martin Luther and his work for civil rights, not just for "the negro" but for all Americans, then why can't I? I did not know that lines were drawn around certain historical figures for conservative white people. Will I melt if I say the name Rosa Parks? As far as I can tell, Dr. King spoke about all Americans being free to seek their own determination and when Al tells me that I can't do that, then that goes against what Dr. King taught, in my humble white opinion. Demanding that any white conservative refrain from honoring, quoting or invoking MLK's teachings seems like an infringement on my civil rights. How does that taste Al? Freedom for some seems to stop at the door of their prejudice. Conservatives are innately racist, therefore should not kneel at the alter of equality. Bigotry rises again on the left. Could it be that we are all in favor of equality but differ in our deliverance?
I don't speak for anyone but myself. I do get goosebumps and throat lumps when reading or listening to some of MLK's speeches. I hope that is OK with you, Al.
Next time you are possessed by the spirit of Dr. King, let me know. I would love to hear more from a TRUE warrior of civil rights. You sir, are an impostor.

16 comments:

namaste said...

"free our people but do it nicely..." liberal people are so dumb with this "nice" concept, i'd like to neck-taser them all.

WELL DONE, nik! say it. say it. SAY IT!! how far you've come on your blog: a white woman saying gaspable racist sounding shit without consequence?! it can't be!

oh but it is! woo-hoo!!

al is so dumb and illogical in his thinking, there's not much i deign to say about him. but this post is so tasty and delish, how can i be mums on this topic? al sounds like a spoiled child with a toy- or in this case a dead man's thoughts. "MINE MINE MINE!! he's my dead friend, never yours! only I can make him talk!" how idiotic.

thanks, nik, for a juicy topic in some snooze-worthy political times.

The Vineyard said...

Oh Al Sharpton . . . I'm trying to figure out what exactly he has done for any person, cause, etc. Seems he has lots of speaking engagements. Likes to accuse and backpedal all in the same breath on TV.

Gotta play the race card, the haves vs. have nots card and every other card that might make someone feel like others look down on them. The you can swoop down and tell them you are fighting for their worth. It's actually quite wicked. God complex.

BrookLyn said...

Your lack of knowledge of your own country's history is astounding. Dr. King never said anything about redistributing anyone's wealth. The reason why Al or any other AA would be a little upset with Cons new found love for Dr. King is because we know the split that happened between African Americans and republicans is a result of their very vocal opposition to desegregation--Strom Thurmond hello. Al & Jesse will always have a platform because there will always be racism in this country. It's less obvious but it's certainly still with us. Secession celebration anyone?

Nikki said...

Brooklyn, like I said, desegregation was oh soooo long ago. The republican party, like the democratic party has changed in the last 50 years, it's time to accept it and move on. Neither party adheres to a so-called racist ideology and to continue to apply that label to the "right" is intellectual dishonesty. Why is it so important to continue to demonize the opposition? I find that racist and bigoted in and of itself. Tactics of this nature are soft core porn at best. And I didn't pull the redistribution of wealth thing out of my ass, I did do some research. :)N

BrookLyn said...

Hey Nikki
If somebody burned your house down 20 years ago and never acknowledged what they had done how would you react to that?

When the right talks of cutting entitlement programs what imagery is shown? Who is that depicting Obama as a monkey? I'm on set today but when we wrap I'll provide a less emotional more comprehensive answer.

Nikki said...

Brooklyn, Somebody did burn my house down more than 20 years ago. I am a Mormon and not only were Mormons persecuted, murdered, raped and survivors of an extermination order granted by US Governor Boggs of Missouri, they continue to experience religious persecution, bigotry and discrimination everyday. Do I demand that others pay me or continue to bemoan all of America because of this treatment? NO. I know that it is only a few Americans who did this and still do this. I would offer to you that religious bigotry is far more prevalent and accepted than racial bigotry. I assume you know that people alive today did not practice slavery. Perhaps our ancestors did, I don't know, but why do generations have to continue to feel guilt and pay. It will never be enough, that's why. Redemption for white people will never come according to some in the black community. Revenge is what it has become and not redemption. Who doesn't acknowledge slavery? I would like to know.
If SOME on the right are portraying Obama as a monkey, just know that all the other white Presidents had their fair share of insults and demonization. That doesn't make it right but it doesn't make all conservatives racists either. I will look forward to your answer. :)N

MRMacrum said...

Well the Right seems to think they own the channeling rights to what the Founders would think today. I guess what is good for the goose is good for the gander.

Nikki said...

MRMacrum, I don't disagree. Don't assume you know my thoughts just because I lean to the right...thanks :)N

BrookLyn said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
BrookLyn said...

Nikki your a fucking moron. I've read more books this week than you've read in your life. Don't think I forgot your not knowing the meaning of certain words in my posts. Lol what am I wasting my time for. It just hit me you're not worth this...the world is changing and pushing people like you out. There are more muslims in the world than christians and the largest population in the US is latino. So go ahead praise MLK...I bet that wasn't what you were saying when they were debating his holiday.

Nikki said...

Brooklyn, I am not sure why you are so pissed off, either it's that you are caught in a lie of hypocrisy or you are too naive to think outside your own bigoted box. I am not the one who is spewing hate....I think most who read your comments will see who the hater is. Feel free to delete, I have them in my email. If you want a civil conversation, I am all for it. But your self-righteous indignation for things that did not happen to you is sorely self-aggrandized fantasy. Pull yourself together girl and stop thinking of yourself as a slave, you weren't one.

Shnurki said...

Re the notion that MLK's opposition to the Vietnam War was hypocritical:

http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/mlkatimetobreaksilence.htm

In this speech he lays out clearly how his anti-war stance is consistent with his beliefs and his body of work.

Shnurki said...

"free our people but do it nicely..." liberal people are so dumb with this "nice" concept, i'd like to neck-taser them all."

The right-wing trend of complaining about liberals being hung up on "nice" is so interesting! Or is it? Perhaps the issue is that so-called liberals and conservatives aren't working with a common definition of these terms. To me, conservatism is by definition a doctrine of "be polite please, i.e. shut the fuck up- how dare you question your superiors?" To me conservatism means that someone fully endorses the status quo (unless a revolution has just occurred, in which case he wants to roll things back). He believes those who are in charge are in charge because they deserve to be; that those who rich are rich because they do good. To point out exceptions is "not nice" and undermines our unity. According to my definition of conservatism, many Democrats fall into the category.

Shnurki said...

Nikki, people can't look at Mormons and tell they're Mormons. As far as anyone who sees you on the street, interviews you for a job, whatever, is concerned, you're not a Mormon, just a regular mainstream white lady. They might not like the way you look, talk, dress- but you are still a standard American to them. Yes, I agree that anti-Mormonism is more socially acceptable than anti-black racism in today's America. But your religion hasn't resulted in you, or your parents, or your parents' parents, being judged as "different" based on sight alone.

I promise this is my last comment today.

But no, I'm sorry, I can't stop. I just saw your last response to Brooklyn. Her comments don't sound bigoted to me- they are insulting towards you personally, but they're not bigoted.

What did you expect when you implicitly equated her desire for you to acknowledge that racism persists in public debate...with seeking revenge and/or a handout? (Granted, calling you a fucking moron was stupid, and while I'm at it, I'd like to apologize for the very non-civil comment I once left you. I'm truly sorry/embarrassed.)
You were the one throwing out bigotry and disguising it as civility. Then- surprise! - she got angry, and now you're calling for civil discourse. Does that sound familiar to you?

Just to recap: "Racism is not dead" does not equal bigotry. Responding to "racism is not dead" with "Oh my, she's got a burning spear and she's coming for our money" = bigotry.

Nikki said...

Shnurki, I appreciate the comment and while I know we won't always agree I do strive to understand where people are coming from. It is difficult to have clarity amidst the conflict when the other person only see's themselves as discriminated against and/or persecuted. While you look at me and see a white woman, if you were to spend a little time with me you would know I was Mormon. We have a culture and a lingo that is different than mainstream. I once worked at a woman's clothing store and was asked to go get a drink after work, I declined because I don't drink, though the decline was not because of the alcohol but rather I just wanted to go see my son. I walked into the back storage room of the store and overheard someone say "could you please not hire any more Mormons". If I would have been black, gay or even Jewish this would have been unacceptable. I just continued on with my work and quit soon after.
My comparison was not to have a contest in victimhood or persecution complexes, it was only to show that while black people did suffer, so did many others and if America is not careful, we can all get bogged down in what WAS and not what IS. More needs to be done to teach our children to judge people by their character in our society. But to stomp around like you are among the slaves, does a disservice to those who truly were oppressed. Racism and slavery are not equivalents, and Brooklyn seems to glory in the past as though she is in shackles currently.
I appreciate your comment....and the civility of it. :)N

Nikki said...

And for the record, Brooklyn by this definition is bigoted in the websters dictionary: a person who is obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices.
By this definition we are all bigots. Including myself. Brooklyn got angry because I compared the persecution of Mormons to that of the blacks. My point wasn't to minimize slavery, but to show that we all have some backgrounds of persecution and at some point have to move on. Are the two experiences the same between blacks and Mormons? No. Similar? Yes. I am not going to argue severity, I know the history and of course slavery was much worse, I get that. I only want intellectual honesty and consistency. :)N