21. Monday, 21 January. Martin Luther King day
This Monday letter comes on a public holiday. Martin Luther King day. It is also by numeric coincidence, the 21st letter, falling on the 21st day of the Month.
Last night I had dinner with my friend Dayne Marshall, in this picture. Dayne and I have been friends since we were fifteen. He lives in South Africa and stops by to see me every year in January when he visits a trade show in Los Angeles. I took him for dinner in Fashion Island and we caught up on events of the past year since our last such meeting.
So, Martin Luther King day? I bet your wondering what that is?
Its an American national Holiday remembering Martin Luther King who was a religious Black man in America in the 60’s.
At a time when most American’s liked religion, but did not like Black men. He would make remarks from the Bible that people liked.
Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.
Then he gave a famous speech called ‘I have a dream‘ in 1963. That made him famous and it brought him to the attention of the White Supremacists. His dream was that racism would come to an end and Black people would be treated the same as white people. Equal opportunity for all.
Unfortunately for Mr King, he lived in a time not long after Blacks were still sold as slaves to be owned by white men and many Americans still believed Blacks were inferior to whites. The issue of race and racial discrimination was important to many Americans. They believed in White-Supremacy. Typified by many racists in political office, like Governor George Wallace who supported the policies of another awful racist “Jim Crow” during the Civil Rights Movement, (Which is when educated Americans tried to uplift Black peoples rights) declaring in his 1963 Inaugural Address that he stood for “segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever”
That is just like the South African thing called Apartheid. Just yesterday I was writing about apartheid. Here, on this blog.
Racial discrimination is where Whites take advantage of Black people because of the color of their skin.
Although it was the law in South Africa for many years, it is no longer legal. There was a long war, between the people who wanted this ‘segregation and advantage for white people’ and the people who believed that segregation and exploitation of people because their skin color is not white, is wrong.
Sadly though, many white people who do not know better, still believe they are superior to Black people. As you can see when people from a racist pro-white superiority position like Theresa May in Britain (who supported Apartheid) and Donald Trump in America, who is very right wing, are elected as leaders. This type of leader does not work to stop racism and promote equal opportunity for all. What we learn is that without work to fight for civil liberty, racism is very popular with a certain type of semi educated white person who wants money more than anything else and has religion to offer forgiveness for their bad behavior. And make no mistake, Racism and white-superiority is extremely bad behavior.
Martin Luther King was spreading the message of anti-racism pretty well right up until 1968 when an awful while man called James Earl Ray bought a Remington Rifle and a telescopic sight, and he hunted Martin Luther King down like an animal.
He aimed his gun, put Mr King in the the cross-hairs of his scope, and pulled the trigger.
Because he was White and Mr King was Black. And Mr King was explaining that racism was bad at a time when America did not wan’t to hear such a message. Poor white people wanted to feel they had some advantage because they were white. They did not want to see Black people better educated and better respected than themselves.
On April 4, 1968, Ray killed Martin Luther King Jr. with a single shot fired from his Remington rifle while Mr. King was standing on the second-floor balcony of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee. Shortly after the shot was fired, witnesses saw Ray fleeing from a rooming house across the street from the motel; he had been renting a room in the house at the time.
We know this guy did the shooting although he later denied it was him. Well wouldn’t he? People who commit cruime often lie about it to try and not be made accountable.
I feel confident it was definitely James Earl ray who shot Martin Luther King. It is a nonsense conspiracy theory to suggest he did not, as some conspiracy theorists suggest, only because they can make money selling that nonsense story.
Now, every year on this day Americans have a holiday to remember this man. Most Americans remember Martin Luther King and all the good he stood for, advancing civil liberties, but I think quite a few Americans still admire an opposing view. Like the views of George Wallace. Racism is not as dead and forgotten as we grew up expecting to be the case by 2019.
Its a little bit funny that people praise a guy like Mr King for being anti racist and at the same time support a racist President who takes brown babies away from their mothers at the border? (That is happening at the Mexico border with the USA right now.) I think that is called irony. Especially when they claim they abuse children in the name of Jesus. They say God tells them how to act and these conveniently disingenuous interpretations of christian behavior, like putting children into cages while their mothers are crying in agony at having their kids taken away, are done in Gods name.
Then these same christian folk go to church on Sunday and they are forgiven. Because its not wrong to take screaming babies away from their mothers because they are Brown and trying to get into a White Country without the right papers. Convenient christianity. They call it ‘take the best and leave the rest.’ It is a form of idiocy that is terrifying to anyone with a double figure IQ. God is their excuse for just about everything that is worst in human nature.
Its a big subject for you to learn about. Racism.
We do not support racists. And we speak out against racism when we see it. Sadly Britain has a sorry history in the business of slavery. Slavery is perhaps the darkest chapter in human behavior. And Britain, second only to Portugal’s Catholics, transported more slaves than anyone else. About 400 years ago these awful people, ‘slave traders’ could go to Africa and tie up families in chains, ship them to ‘the colonies’ and sell them for money to slave owners, who could make them work for the rest of their lives for nothing. They even used these slaves to build the White house, the Government building in America. It took far too long before the abolitionists convinced the Christians to outlaw slavery. Slavery on English soil was confirmed in Somersett’s Case in 1772. It remained legal in most of the British Empire until the Slavery Abolition Act in 1833.
It took them until 1865 to abolish slavery in America. Not that long ago when you look at our history.
Just about 150 years later the racism behind slavery has not disappeared as we hoped it would have.
Sadly, on Martin Luther King day, we can reflect there is still awful racism in America. And many Americans believe, this is why they have elected Donald Trump to be leader. A White man in the White House. A man who has a long personal history of racist behavior, who is popular with racists. That is why I think they voted him in as president.
Well, I am off now. I am meeting Victoria and Markaela for lunch with their lovely mother, Michele. Victoria is a lawyer and knows all about your story with British family law. I think you will meet her one day when you visit.
Victoria has a new dog. Oliver. A service dog in training. He goes everywhere with her. In restaurants. On airplanes. He is still young just 7 months, but he is already very smart and well behaved.
Do you remember Oliver the other Black lab, who lived at the 4 Seasons in Hampshire, where we stayed many times?
I suggested the name Oliver for Victoria’s black lab because of Oliver from the 4 Seasons, and she liked it. So the name Oliver lives on in another Black lab, who I hope you will get to meet this summer. if we can persuade Amlot/Adler and O’Leary to let you be with your father for the first time in over three years? Wouldn’t that be nice?