Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was a lot of things. A teacher. A student. A revolutionary. A strategist. An agent of change. And just as there are many things that he was, there are many more that he was not. He was not passive. He was not apologetic.
It seems that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is all-too-frequently used as a tool for people to discredit the merits of modern black thought and protests. King was not a docile man, sitting idle and plaintively asking for racial justice. King was an assertive agent of civil rights. He openly disobeyed unjust laws, a part that many people seem to forget. His job was not to meekly and submissively ask for justice. It was his job to apply pressure to the ruling class and force them to distribute justice to the people.
Do not conflate “peaceful” with “docile.” While Dr. King, himself, did not believe in organizing riots, he doesn’t deny their occasional necessity, saying:
“I think that we’ve got to see that a riot is the language of the unheard.”
That being said when asked about rising numbers of people who don’t necessarily agree with King’s non-violent philosophies. Again, his job was to apply pressure to the ruling class. Riots are simply another way of accomplishing this.
I refuse to sit here and watch as the memory of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. gets watered-down into a spiritless token for people to call upon whenever black people get “a little too out of hand.” To quote Huey Freeman from the Boondocks,
“I have no tolerance for white people trying to lecture us from the comfort of their own privilege.”
And I’m sure that the ghost of Dr. King will have no part of that as well. Happy Dr. Martin Luther King Day- here’s to not forgetting what he really stood for.