King, Lewis & Sharpton Three Speeches Three Reviews

Wesley: We are men of action, lies do not become us.

The Princess Bride 1987

J. D. Cahill: Mister I ain’t got a bigoted bone in my body You don’t drop that axe I’ll blast you to hell as quick as I would a white man.

Cahill US Marshall 1973

Mr. Spock: There is an old Vulcan proverb: only Nixon could go to China.

Star Trek VI the Undiscovered Country 1991

An angry response to Salon’s piece two days ago earned the blog one of my best traffic days of the month.

Yesterday between Think Progress pushing this headline

John Lewis At March On Washington: ‘I’m Not Going To Stand By And Let The Supreme Court Take The Right To Vote Away’

and CBS highlighting MLK III playing the race card on the Martin case again at the MLK anniversary put me in the mindset to go after both, particularly Lewis after his mendacity concerning Andrew Breitbart.

But given the record of accuracy on the left and the conversation of same on yesterday’s Radio show (The replay is at 10 AM listen live EST here) in the middle of what was to be a rant I decided to check out the speeches from Mr. King, Congressman Lewis & the “Reverend” Al in full sans MSM reports.

Let’s start with Martin Luther King III:

King spent the vast majority of his speech reflecting on the legacy of his father. A lot of it frankly was empty pap that I suspect he has said many times before, but in the middle he decided to place the race card on the Trayvon Martin Case:

“However, sadly, the tears of Trayvon Martin’s mother and father remind us that, far too frequently, the color of one’s skin remains a license to profile, to arrest and to even murder with no regard for the content of one’s character”

Never mind that there had been a series of robberies in the area by young black men, never mind that a jury acquitted George Zimmerman who didn’t fire upon Trayvon Martin until he was pounding his head into the pavement. The crowd wanted to hear it called Murder so murder it is.”

His talk about voter suppression is simply a lie, which I’ll discuss in-depth later and his litany of solutions and goals were simply a laundry list of Democrat goals from repeal of Stand your ground laws (disproportionately used by black defendants) and more gun control in Chicago whose restrictive laws have failed.

Nothing says: “I honor my father’s legacy” like using the anniversary of his most famous speech to race bait a bit and push the left’s political agenda.

You can watch the whole speech here.

I’d critique CBS for highlighting his playing the race card again but as his speech was entirely forgettable who can blame them? Their job isn’t to put people to sleep.

I suspect any exceptions to the contrary is solely based on his parentage which is totally unfair both to his father and to him. I suspect there an analyst would find Mr. King’s psychological issues from the combination of his father’s murder and the need to live up to somehow live up to one of the great men of the 20th century, more exciting and delectable than I do Kentucky Derby Pie and believe me that’s a tall order

Next came John Lewis, he gave a better speech but played a few games as well.

Mr. King the younger was thrown into the movement by the vagaries of events.  Not John Lewis, he is an actual honest to goodness hero of the Civil Rights Movement.  He grew up in the South under Jim Crow, was of age at a time when he couldn’t vote.  He lived these evils not as a child but as an adult and he fought against them and paid the physical price for doing so.

All of those actions are honorable and he should be respected for them, but that personal knowledge and experience carries some responsibility and the opening of his speech reflected that when he said:

I’ve come back here again to say that those days for the most part are gone

That is actually a radical statement for this crowd. It is the theme of the left that it remains 1963 forever and the rhetoric that is thrown around these days would make you think otherwise but he lived those time and frankly knows better first hand. That bit didn’t get a lot of play.

Unfortunately he spoiled that sentence almost immediately when he followed up with:

There are forces there are people who want to take us back.

What “forces”? What “people”? He doesn’t specify allowing the Sharpton organized crowd to morph their political foes into the Bull Connors of the past.

He then followed up on voting saying the following:

When I stood here 50 years ago I said one man one vote is the African cry, it is ours too and it must be ours.


The vote is precious. It’s almost sacred

I agree that’s why I support Voter Id laws that would assure ONE man ONE vote. Isn’t that the African cry?

Mr. King the younger can plead ignorance when he calls these laws, voter suppression as he never voted under Jim Crow, Sharpton is trying to build a base for power and profit so when he went on concerning the repeatedly during his own speech so of course he is going to demagogue it.

But shouldn’t a man who lived under Jim Crow literacy tests know the difference between those tests applied unequally and an ID that is required uniformly regardless of race, creed or color? Surely if the vote is almost sacred it deserves at least as much care and diligence as buying a bottle of booze or using a credit card in a supermarket?

His opposition to these laws is cheap party politics but when he went after the Supreme Court, that was simply disingenuous

I gave a little blood on that bridge in Selma, Alabama, for the right to vote I am not going to stand by and let the Supreme Court take the right to vote away from us.

He knows that neither the Supreme Court ruling nor the voter ID laws being passed will stop black voters from voting honestly.  As a congressman for over a quarter of a century he is familiar enough with the law and how its applied to know what it means and I’m obliged to call him out

Taken as a whole the speech wasn’t bad. Watch the whole thing below instead of relying on Think Progress who only highlighted those parts of his speech that suited their agenda.

Finally there was Al Sharpton.

He is the man I expected the least of, after all he is pretty much a cheap grifter yet mixed in with his standard demagoguery were some of the best messages of the day beginning with this opening reminding the crowd of the sacrifices of those who came before:

We owe them for what we have today.

He told a story of a Black man who stressed his own accomplishments as opposed to what the civil rights era did, pointing to his resume

Read my resume, civil rights didn’t write my resume. I looked at his resume and said ‘You’re right, civil rights didn’t write your resume, but civil rights made someone read your resume.’ Don’t act like whatever you achieved was because you were so smart.

That’s an important point those who accomplish should remember who came before but I submit that fellow building a record of accomplishment and achieving is the best way to honor those who came before.

He then pivoted to the voter ID laws claiming we had voter ID laws right along.

That simply isn’t true, and he knows it isn’t true but both Lewis & king shoveled that BS so it would be impossible to expect Sharpton not to be Sharpton.

He continued to claiming if there is money for bailouts there is money for jobs, and by jobs he means bail outs for cities for bloated budgets etc.

While a good line the fallacy is ALL those bailouts were budget busting mistakes that should not have been done, we are not required to repeat foolish mistakes just to be fair.

Sharpton then pivoted again and said some of the best words from any speakers of the day.

Let me say to our young brothers and sisters many that were on the program, we owe a debt to those who thought enough of you to put their lives on the line We owe a debt to those who believed in us when we didn’t believe in ourselves and we need to conduct ourselves in a way that respect that. Don’t ever think that men like Medger Evers died to give you the right to be a hoodlum or a thug that is not what they gave their lives about.

Well said, he continued on the respect of women

We need to talk about how we address one another, how we respect one another. We need to teach our young folks I don’t care how much money they give you, don’t disrespect your women. No matter what they promise you make it clear that you know that Rosa Parks wasn’t no ho and Fannie Lou Hamer wasn’t no bitch. We got some house cleaning to do, and as we clean up our house we will then be able to clean up America.

Excellent words, slightly ironic as Evers didn’t die to give Sharpton the right to be a grifter either , but it was an important message to give to his followers on a grand stage and his follow up about giving the young people dreams to achieve rather than breaking their dreams was rather powerful as well.

If we told them who they could be and what they could do they would pull up their pants and get to work. We have to change the way we deal with this

Sharpton after one more pivot to politics and again mixing in the false “taking away our vote” made one more pivot suggesting their opponents were angry that “Old America has passed away”, but there he missed the mark.

The “Old America” that is missed is not the America of white privilege but of Judeo-Christian values, of respect for parents and of responsibility and restraint. Because Shapton sees the world in race colored glasses he misses the irony that his opponents are pushing the very values that he laments are missing from his young and the allies he has chosen to enable his power base have declared war on the very values needed to save the black community.

Sharpton met both the lowest expectations but mixed into hit the single most important message of the day. One might hope that the people who will ignore that important message when delivered by an Allen West, or complain when it is given by at Don Lemon or a Bill Cosby will pay attention when given by a Sharpton. Only Nixon can go to China.

The real question is this, will the left highlight the parts of his speech that serves their political agenda or the part that is most needed to be repeated in the black community?

I don’t have high hopes in that regard


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