Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Lowery Mars King Service

The "Reverend" Joseph Lowery, co-founder of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference had nothing Christian-like to say when stooping to politics at the memorial service for Coretta Scott King. Lowery, a critic of the Bush family dating back to the Reagan era, usurped what should have been a tribute to the wife of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr, instead turning it into a political farce. (Newsday: Bush gets an earful.

During his remarks, Lowery attempted to rhyme, "We know there were no weapons of mass destruction over there, but Coretta knew and we know there are weapons of misdirection right down here." Indeed there were, Mr. Lowery - sorry, you have not earned the right to be called "reverend". The misdirection was nothing more than bait and switch. You promised people a memorial service to Coretta, and instead forced them into a political rally.

Former President Clinton attempted to maintain focus on the dignity of the service and the person allegedly being honored, yet the raucous crowd spoiled even that. His remarks were dignified and respectful, proclaiming that he was honored to be in the presence of "my President, and my former President." Unfortunately, the unruly crowd choose to politicise even that, pointing to Hillary Clinton and shouting "future president." Clinton was forced to chastise them, saying, "I don't want us to forget that there's a woman in there, not a symbol. A real woman who lived and breathed and got angry and got hurt and had dreams and disappointments."

Sadly, even former President Jimmy Carter got swept into the political fray, charging that, "It was difficult for them [the King family] personally with the civil liberties of both husband and wife violated as they became the target of secret government wiretaps." Carter, of course, was taking a not-so-veiled swipe at NSA wiretapping of terrorists. Unfortunately for Carter, he needed a history lesson in this case. Let's see, who was it that tapped Martin Luther King Jr and Coretta? Ah, yes. That would have been the Justice Department under John F. Kennedy. Let me think for a moment, now. Who was the Attorney General then? Wait, it's coming to me. Oh, yes! It was Robert F. Kennedy! The same Robert F. Kennedy that was an adviser to Senator Joe McCarthy, I might add. Did I mention that JFK and RFK were both Democrats? Perhaps I forgot to add that piece. I should point out that Nicholas Katzenbach, Attorney General under Lyndon Johnson, continued this policy of wiretapping civil rights leaders.

If you want to know why the nation is so divided, you only have to look at this shameful memorial service to see first-hand the causes of that division. Black leaders such as Lowery, hiding behind a false cloak of Christianity, use what should be moments of unity to advance their personal political agendas. Unlike Martin Luther King Jr, whom many of them like to quote, their message is a message of hatred, of discord, of segregation. There is no similarity at all between the message King promoted and the one being politicised by his so-called followers. Misguided idealists such as Carter also jump on the racial band-wagon, further promoting this message of hate. The many advances in civil rights over the last three decades have been made despite the public rhetoric of people like Lowery.

There is a time for politics. A memorial service for someone many considered to be a great American is certainly not one such time. Lowery and Carter's shameful outbursts did nothing to advance the cause of Martin and Coretta King. What they did was further divide a nation.



Alan Fraser said...

And there's a difference between that and pimping off her name in the State of the Union address, I suppose. The Bush example is vastly more heinous than your charge as Bush used that same address to push for more wiretapping and it is an acknowledged fact that the FBI bugged Coretta King's bedroom. Bush knows no shame whatsoever and remains the most vile President in this country's history.

contratimes said...

Mr. Fraser's remarks are unfortunate, for they represent the sort of unreasoned bomb-throwing that is killing dialogue in the West. Mr. Bush's speech was written well before Ms. King's death, and yet it behooved him, as a citizen and as president, to mention her passing. Had he not, no doubt Mr. Fraser would have found further proof for his claim that Mr. Bush is vile. How kind.

Moreover, Bush did not use her life and death as some sort of justification for his policies; for calling for social and economic change. Mr. Bush merely mentioned, with gentlemanly gratitude, that a wonderful woman had died. There was as much exploitation in that gesture as there is in this sentence.

However, as others have pointed out, the Democratics who churned up political rhetoric in the house of the Lord (and the house of grief) stand with those who turned Paul Wellstone's funeral into a slamfest. It is clear, from Mr. Fraser's remarks, that many people appreciate a lack of decorum and respect.



Ouroboros said...

Carter criticises something a Democrat did.

So, you work hard at interpreting it only as an anti-Bush anti-Republican slam so that you can turn around and also call Carter ignorant. In the same paragraph no less. An amazing argument that turns on its tail and swallows itself.

Ever think that Carter might simply disapprove of secret wiretapping, reminding us of a time when people we now honor were targeted by the government.

Speaking of unreasoned partisan bomb throwing -- of course it's only about Republicans and Democrats. I forgot!

Kannafoot said...

Just to be clear, you are referring to the same Jimmy Carter that issued Executive Order 12139 which authorizes the Attorney General to "approve electronic surveillance to acquire foreign intelligence information without a court order." If Carter disapproves of illegal wiretapping, he sure kept that opinion well hidden when he issued that EO.

Ouroboros said...

Nice try. That executive order only applies to communication between or among foreign powers.

Rather weak sauce.