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I doubt the legitimacy of this, but I still felt the urge to respond

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I doubt the legitimacy of this, but I still felt the urge to respond

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I got this email from a coworker:

From: coworker
Sent: Wednesday, March 08, 2006 9:28 AM
To: other coworker 
Cc: polymorphism
Subject: This has got to be a joke

Four things I'll bet you didn't know about Martin Luther King and some comments:

1. His name wasn't Martin Luther. It was Michael. It was decided Martin Luther had a more prominent ring to it, so he went by that. He never legally changed his name. To this day, he lived and died as Michael King

2. While working on his dissertation for his doctoral degree at Boston University, he heavily plagiarized from another author who had done research on a subject similar to King's. An academic committee later found that over half of Kings work was plagiarized, yet would not revoke his doctorate degree. King was dead by this time, and the committee ruled that revoking the title would serve no purpose. It was also discovered that King's famous I HAVE A DREAM speech was also not his own. He stole it from a sermon by Archibald Carey, a popular black preacher in the 1950's.

3. King was under FBI surveillance for several years
(until he died) due to his ties with communist organizations throughout the country. King accepted money from the organizations to fund his movements. In return, King had to appoint communist leaders to run certain districts of his SCLC (Southern Christian Leadership Conference), who then could project their communist ideas to larger audiences. A federal judge in the 60's ruled that the FBI files on King links to communism to remain top-secret until 2027. Senator Jesse Helms appealed to the Supreme Court in 1983 to release the files, so the bill in the Senate to create the Martin Luther King Federal Holiday could be abolished. He was denied.

4. One of King's closest friends, Rev. Ralph Abernathy, wrote a book in 1989 in which he talked about King's obsession with white prostitutes. King would often use church donations to have drunken sex parties, where he would hire two to three white prostitutes, occasionally beating them brutally. The FBI agents who monitored King have also reported this. King was married with four children.

Martin Luther King Day is a day on which this country comes to a screeching halt so we can have parades and memorials to honor this man, a man that most of the world views as a saint for his role in the civil rights movement:

No other public holiday in the United States honors a single individual; Of all the great leaders in our Nation's history-none of them have their own holiday; All of our great war heroes share Memorial Day; All of our great presidents share President's Day. Yet King -- a man who was a phony, a cheater, a traitor, and a sexual degenerate gets a day of his own.

I have a big problem with that. I am simply trying to point out that: The vast majority of people are sorely mistaken about Michael King; and Reverse discrimination is blatantly obvious everywhere you look today.

Have you been watching the news lately? President Bush just got himself in some hot water when he spoke out against the University of Michigan for giving black applicants precedence over more qualified white applicants. Now Jesse Jackson, the NAACP, and other black leaders are trashing him, without a doubt planning how they can use this.

Think about that - Bush just made a stand for equal human rights, but lo and behold -- in this case the blacks didn't want to be treated as equals.

Make up your own minds, but I feel like I belong to one of the more abused ethnic groups in this country today.

Can I do anything about it? Absolutely not. If I dare speak out I'll get labeled a racist, harassed by the media, subsequently lose my job, and never be able to show my face in public again.

But what I can do is send this e-mail to as many people I know in hopes that when you're watching the \ evening news on Martin Luther King Day, and you observe our politicians falling all over themselves to be filmed in a black church, you'll keep these above facts in mind.

Rocky McCann
Enterprise Functions, LLC
5312 Hickory Ridge Blvd.
Baton Rouge, LA 70817

and I replied.

Dunno. It certainly is not very funny, if it is a joke.

Snopes, the fact checking site I usually go to, seems to be down right now. Even so, the only way to really be sure is to replicate the research that this email is claiming has been done. There's nothing here that wouldn't be a matter of public record - this info supposedly comes from sources like birth cert, school records, political maneuvering and a published book.

The real question, to my mind, is, how much would any of this matter even if it were true? Is the civil rights movement negated if MLK was not actually a doctor (and FWIW, educational institutions give honorary degrees all the time - I'm sure there are hundreds of schools who would have been happy to give one to him)? Would communist ties negate his vision? Would posthumous discoveries about hanky-panky undo his work?

I don't much care for the modern scandal-mongering outlook, honestly. What are these supposed great wrongs, anyway, when you look closely at them? My take on his points, ASSUMING THEY ARE TRUE, is this:

The sexual mores of America are so twisted and wrong and unlivable that hardly anyone is able to match up to them, and I don't think that failing in and of itself is any reason to condemn a man. I personally think prostitution should be legalized, anyway.
Very few politicians write their own speeches, and they are seldom if ever attributed. This is accepted universally; it is not considered immoral. The preacher being cited as the actual author of the speech is the only one who can legitimately say whether it was stolen and start something over it - and if he had thought his intellectual property rights were more important than the stir it caused and the good it's done, then it seems to me that he missed the point of his own creation. You don't write such a thing for the fame it might bring. If I had written something like that, and it was snagged and broadcast by someone else to thus bring nationwide attention to my cause, I would be proud of myself, and if asked about theft, I would deny it and support the use to which my work had been put.
Communist ties are a joke, insofar as "wrongdoing" is concerned. The evidence of the Russian bloc says that it doesn't work, at least on the large scale, but it's not EVIL, though they have they have at times been seen as such in this country. Even that attitude has not always been prevalent - communists have at times run for public office. There may be some now, I have no idea.
who gives a crap what his legal name was, anyway?

Long story short, the only thing here that I would really have a problem with is the plagiarism. Plagiarism sucks. Still, accusations are easy. I would need to see exactly what they are calling "plagiarism" before I could make a call.

Reverse discrimination does exist, and it is not a good thing. But good old fashioned non-reverse discrimination ALSO still exists. On the whole, I think the idea that whites (from what he says, I am assuming his whititude) are an oppressed minority is ridiculous, and socially harmful, and evidence of a willful blindness to the truths that surround us on a daily basis. Using Martin Luther King as a rallying point against reverse discrimination is appalling.

Also, though it's not a very important point compared to the others, there is a Casimir Pulaski Day (Polish war hero), and there are surely other days named after individuals. WRONG, SUCKA!

I think this email is pretty stupid, and whoever wrote it needs a serious beating.

I don't know why I get so het up over these things, honestly - I just do.

Also, I think I skimmed the sex paragraph when I first read it - otherwise I would have additionally addressed the idea of what the FBI might see if they looked through ANYBODY's window, and about consensuality. I also don't know that I am actually coming out in favor of a reverend using the donations of his flock for private parties...   Still, I was on my break and later lunch when I wrote it, thus under time constraints.  Rarely will I put forth my best writing under those conditions.
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