Monday, January 15, 2007

Celebrate MLK:s Most Famous Phrase-But Not MLK!

Only one person is currently honored with a separate holiday in America. But it is not the creators of the nation, George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. They have to share their holidays with various mediocre personalities, including history's greatest monster on "President's day". No it is a radical leftist activist by the name of Martin Luther King.

The only good thing he ever contributed with was that legendary "content of character. not color of skin" line, when it comes to judging people. That was indeed a good line, which I myself have quoted, but as that principle is something which any rational individual can come up with him or herself, I wouldn't overestimate his importance in it.

While MLK did oppose the senseless U.S. intervention in the Vietnam War, this was done for the wrong reasons. I.e. , because he rooted for the Vietnamese communists.

What were his shortcomings? Well, that is explained in detail by Marcus Epstein here. Let's just say in short that he was a radical leftist who among other things explicitly, repeatedly and in no uncertain terms favored affirmative action and other racist priviligies for blacks, something which even conservative MLK-advocate Andrew Busch today acknowledges.

Claiming that MLK was an opponent of affirmative action, like the clueless neocon Swedish blogger Dick Erixon claims, is completely false.

Any true anti-racist would celebrate the "content of character, not color of skin" principle. But as MLK himself rejected it in practice, it makes no sense to celebrate him


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don’t think you your giving King nearly enough credit. King had much to do with organizing non-violent demonstrations and acts of civil disobedience that led to desegregation in the South. He also worked hard to change the racial zeitgeist of the South that ultimately led to the Civil Rights Act of 1964. He may not be perfect (who is?) but he certainly left the world a better place than he found it.

2:45 PM  
Blogger stefankarlsson said...

Sure, MLK's activism was a contributing factor in accelerating the end of the forced segregation laws of the South. And that was a good thing.

But the Civil Rights act of 1964 also led immediately to anti-discrimination laws inconsistent with private property rights and led later to the affirmative action and quota mentality that today permeates too much of American society. So even in terms of effects, MLK's legacy wasn't something that libertarians should applaud.

8:01 PM  

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