MLK quotes that white people won't like

I was thinking about this recently – people seem to know about three or four MLK quotes that are soothing and non-offensive to white sensibilities. “I have a dream”; “hate cannot drive out hate”; “we must live together as brothers”; “nonviolence means avoiding not only external physical violence but also internal violence of spirit”. Certainly true, but also commodified and non-threatening. Yesterday I saw someone trying to explain inequality – “Suppose you have two families which both originally have equal income and one family spends all their money on foreign holidays etc whereas the other saves their money to put their son to an elite private school…” Apparently a lot of Trump’s support can also be traced to white people being tired of political correctness and being called racist or sexist – and this is perfectly understandable.

In any case, I thought it would be worth highlighting some MLK quotes that require white people to y’know, do something about racism in society.

In 1863 the Negro was told that he was free as a result of the Emancipation Proclamation being signed by Abraham Lincoln. But he was not given any land to make that freedom meaningful. It was something like keeping a person in prison for a number of years and suddenly discovering that that person is not guilty of the crime for which he was convicted. And you just go up to him and say, “Now you are free,” but you don’t give him any bus fare to get to town. You don’t give him any money to get some clothes to put on his back or to get on his feet again in life.

Every court of jurisprudence would rise up against this, and yet this is the very thing that our nation did to the black man. It simply said, “You’re free,” and it left him there penniless, illiterate, not knowing what to do. And the irony of it all is that at the same time the nation failed to do anything for the black man, though an act of Congress was giving away millions of acres of land in the West and the Midwest. Which meant that it was willing to undergird its white peasants from Europe with an economic floor.

But not only did it give the land, it built land-grant colleges to teach them how to farm. Not only that, it provided county agents to further their expertise in farming; not only that, as the years unfolded it provided low interest rates so that they could mechanize their farms. And to this day thousands of these very persons are receiving millions of dollars in federal subsidies every years not to farm. And these are so often the very people who tell Negroes that they must lift themselves by their own bootstraps. It’s all right to tell a man to lift himself by his own bootstraps, but it is a cruel jest to say to a bootless man that he ought to lift himself by his own bootstraps.

Following on from that quote:


MLK was just about to kick some serious arse when he was taken out… fucken rat bastards


It’s kind of typical that he would be denatured and used as a civil rights vaccine on his death.


MLK Jr, Malcolm X, JFK; they were all poised to pave the path for real change in our society… and then they were all summarily executed, and that’s why the Black community hasn’t had a real leader or champion activist ever since.

(Sorry; while Obama represented us very well just as a Black man in the difficult position of being POTUS, he’s not exactly what we would call a ‘devoted militant’ for our cause.)


I guess one of the problems of being in that position is that you have to avoid any hint of being pro-your minority. At the same time people pat themselves on the back now that the glass ceiling has been broken.


Exactly; I don’t ever fault Obama for not being “pro-Black enough,” I’m just happy he made it through both terms without being assassinated.

And while one glass ceiling was shattered, that’s still just a minor stepping stone in the advancement of our society.

It doesn’t mean we can just stop striving to ascend, because our work is now somehow “done.”

On the contrary, the hard work is just beginning… especially if we end up having to start all over again, as looks like we might.


Dumb new-age-y backgrounds notwithstanding, I prefer those to the Christian non-violence love your enemies God stuff usually quoted. But Malcolm X’s quotes are more inspiring, IMHO.


If Malcolm X hadn’t been taken out I can only wonder the kind of amazing things that could have come out of a partnership with MLK. While Malcolm X had thrown plenty of shade on King in the past, around the time X was assassinated, he had become far more moderate and had started a friendship with King.

And with that, here’s two awesome people hanging out:


I just met two Black Panther Party members this Sunday, talking about inter-generational activism. I can’t really speak for them, but they kind of echoed what you said, feeling like the leadership of that generation was systemically dismantled, as well as the history being systematically erased as we see here with MLK, and now we need to bring it back.


And what many people in my community don’t seem to understand is that we cannot do it alone; we need every ally we can get, especially from all the other endangered & disenfranchised groups.


Oh, my goodness, so much This. To this day I am astonished that, as far as I know, we never even heard of any serious attempts on his life. Hell, even Gerald Ford got shot at twice.

A part of me will be surprised if Trump is inaugurated before someone takes a shot at him. I have become deeply cynical about society today.


If dude is ditching his press/security details, he’s only making it easier for any potential ‘Oswalds.’


is it a felony yet to say that somebody should assassinate donald trump

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It’s game over if they do. Reichstag fire.

A discussion best for another thread, though.


Hmm, you’re right. I propose that all discussion of plans to assassinate Trump should be kept to lounge topics. You can’t be too careful.


Not to distract from MLK, I’ve just always found Garvey to be very interesting.


This popped up in my playlist on the way to work and I felt compelled to post it here. In many ways it seems fitting these days both in message and spirit.

Especially this which rings so ominously true:


found this here


Nothing like a ‘Tyson’ quote to shake up folks’ perspective of black science man…


He is still alive, though.