Monday, January 15, 2018 at 8:06 AM

Observing MLK Day 2018

Posted by Anthony L. Hall

If Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. were alive today, he would be the first to bemoan that America remains so far from the Promised Land that inspired his famous dream. It speaks volumes in this respect that President-elect Trump began observations of this holiday last year with a racist rant on Twitter against MLK protégé John Lewis.

I commented in “Observing MLK Day,” January 16, 2017.

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After Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.) said that Russian interference undermined the legitimacy of his election, the preternaturally thin-skinned Trump reacted by impugning Lewis’s character and life’s work:

Congressman John Lewis should spend more time on fixing and helping his district, which is in horrible shape and falling apart (not to…mention crime infested) rather than falsely complaining about the election results. All talk, talk, talk – no action or results. Sad!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 14,  2017

This he said of a man who bears well-known scars from marching with MLK for civil rights. Lewis also happens to be the most revered black man in America today – as Obama himself would concede.

As for his district, far from ‘falling apart [and being] crime infested,’ Atlanta is the very manifestation of that ‘shining city upon a hill’ former President Ronald Reagan envisioned in his farewell address. Moreover, no less a Republican bible than Forbes named his district ‘the ninth best place in America for businesses and career development, and among the best for job growth and education.’

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Yet, remarkably, President Trump began observations this year with a racist rant inside the White House against “shithole countries” like Haiti and all those in Africa.

Evidently, when it comes to immigration, he wants people to be judged by the color of their skin, not by the content of their character. This is why he reportedly huffed that too many are coming from those black countries and not enough from white ones … like Norway.

I commented in “Only an Asshole like Trump Would Call Caribbean and African Countries ‘Shitholes,” January 12, 2018, and “Are the Caribbean Leaders Condemning Trump Living in Glass Houses?” January 12, 2018. I trust you’re still digesting what I wrote. Therefore, I see no point in quoting from either one.

Incidentally, it’s arguable that this latest rant vindicates Lewis’s declared intent to boycott Trump’s presidency. He did not attend Trump’s signing of a Proclamation to Honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day at the White House on Friday. And he said just yesterday – on ABC’s This Week with George Stephanopoulos – that he will not attend Trump’s State of the Union Address on January 30.

But, hey, this is MLK’s day.

It is most noteworthy that he is the only private citizen (black or white) to have a federal holiday declared in his honor.

Hell, even Washington and Lincoln have to share one holiday on Presidents’ Day. And, with the August 2013 dedication of his memorial, MLK is now perched on the Mall alongside them in perpetuity. All of which might explain why Washington’s monument is glaring down on MLK’s …

Seriously, though, am I the only one who thinks the Washington Monument looks eerily like a stonemason’s homage to the KKK …?

There was considerable media coverage last week of workers rappelling down the Washington Monument to inspect damage caused by the recent earthquake. However, while most people seemed mesmerized by the acrobatic feat this entailed, I could not help noticing how much up-close images of the cone of the Monument resemble the hood of a Klansman.

Is it not a curious thing that this everlasting monument to the slave-holding Washington pays unwitting homage to this everlasting symbol of white supremacy?

(“Washington Monument’s KKK Imagery,” The iPINIONS Journal, October 11, 2011)

Whatever the case, this holiday is not just a testament to MLK’s greatness. It’s a symbolic down payment on the promissory note, which represents the unpaid, if not unpayable, debt America owes descendants of the blacks it enslaved.

That said:

This is the day which the Lord has made; Let us rejoice and be glad in it.

Related commentaries:
MLK Day 2017
Only an asshole

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