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Black History: Special Delivery!!

Bernice King – Speaking Truth

Black History: Special Delivery!!

The 2021 King Holiday has Bernice King, daughter of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., sharing some POWERFUL tweets today! Y’all better stop taking her daddy’s quotes and legacy out of context! Check out the tweets below.

Please don’t act like everyone loved by father. He was assassinated. 1967 poll reflected that He was one of the most hated men in America. Most hated. Many who quote him now and evoke him to deter justice today would likely hate, and may already hate, authentic King.” -Bernice King

Source: https://twitter.com/BerniceKing

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s Reflection On The Unequal Distribution Of Power In America

Black History: Special Delivery!!

As we commemorate the 2021 MLK Holiday, The Black Mail Blog has been sharing some little known facts and quotes from Dr. King. We hope you have enjoyed these posts.

In his book, Where Do We Go From Here: Chaos To Community, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. addresses the “unequal” distribution of power between black and white people. Where Do We Go From Here challenges the nation at a time of both intense struggle and opportunity. King was very concerned that white liberals in particular were perhaps more interested in symbols rather than substance of the movement. He questioned whether or not they truly were invested in equal distribution of power. A powerful quote from the book, “There is nothing essentially wrong with power. The problem is that in America power is unequally distributed.”

History Of The King Holiday

Black History: Special Delivery!!

It took 15 years of advocating before the King holiday was signed into law. The late Congressman John Conyers of Michigan first introduced a bill for a federal holiday in 1968 just 4 days after King’s assassination. Each year for 15 years, Conyers with the support of the Congressional Black Caucus continued to advocate for the holiday. Finally, in 1983, the King holiday was approved. It would take until the year 2000 for all 50 states to adopt the holiday.

Sources:

https://www.ajc.com/news/state–regional-govt–politics/john-conyers-and-the-uphill-battle-honor-mlk-birthday/Dx8jhl0KJANrvMAZ9ApUCO/

https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/john-conyers-who-first-proposed-an-mlk-holiday-marks-50-years-in-congress/2015/01/18/998d4ba2-9d08-11e4-bcfb-059ec7a93ddc_story.html

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/obituaries/john-conyers-death-american-politician-congress-detroit-martin-luther-king-holiday-a9185526.html

Remembering Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr Where Do We Go From Here? – Part 3 of 3

Black History: Special Delivery!!

We conclude our remembrance of the King holiday with a final quote from Dr. King’s book Where Do We Go From Here: Chaos Or Community. It should not be lost on any of us how relevant Dr. King’s perspective continues to be 50+ years following his death and the publication of this book. Today’s quote embodies King’s mission to eradicate hatred in the form of racism, discrimination, and other forms of oppression. King’s efforts were powered by a sense of justice and rooted in his love for all men. King believed that justice was love in action! We salute the legacy of Dr. King and all those who led and continue to lead the fight for equity and justice!

Today’s quote: “Power at its best is love implementing the demands of justice. Justice at its best is love correcting everything that stands against love.” Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

A Second Tragedy Occurred At The Lorraine Motel On April 4, 1968

Black History: Special Delivery!!

Dr. King’s assassination was not the only tragedy to occur at the Lorraine Motel on April 4, 1968. After witnessing his assassination Lorraine Bailey, (wife of the owner) had a stroke and later died. She was also the switchboard operator. This is partially why there was a delay in getting an ambulance to the hotel. The motel was African American owned and operated and hosted many black celebrities and influential figures.

Sources:

https://www.wmcactionnews5.com/story/37871830/daughter-of-lorraine-motels-owners-recalls-day-mlk-died/

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2018/03/28/lorraine-motel-mlk-assassination-witnesses/1071959001/

https://www.civilrightsmuseum.org/news/posts/the-famous-lorraine-motel

Remembering Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Where Do We Go From Here? – Part 2 of 3

Black History: Special Delivery!!

Today our nation celebrates the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday! To honor the legacy of Dr. King, we bring you another quote from Dr. King’s book, Where Do We Go From Here: Chaos Or Community. Published in 1967, it was Dr. King’s 4th book and the last one he wrote before his assassination in 1968.

In Where Do We Go From Here, King looks forward as the civil rights movement transitions into a new phase. King was certain that this new phase would also bring on new challenges as African Americans would expect to see the rights they had fought to achieve continue to remain enforced by the U.S. government. King also believed that the fight for equality would continue with the African American community continuing its struggle for living wages, fair housing, and education.

Our second quote being shared from Where Do We Go From Here is: “In the days ahead we must not consider it unpatriotic to raise certain basic questions about our national character.” -Dr. Martin Luther, King, Jr.,

Remembering Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr Where Do We Go From Here? – Part 1 of 3

Black History: Special Delivery

In honor of the 2021 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday commemoration Black Mail will be sharing a 3 part compilation of quotes from “Where Do We Go From Here: Chaos To Community”. Published in 1967, Where Do We Go from Here was King’s evaluation of the state of race relations in the U.S. following ten years of the U.S. Civil Rights movement.  

King wrote the final draft of the book while vacationing in Jamaica in January and February 1967. During this time King stayed in Ocho Rios, Jamaica where he rented a home with no telephone. This marked one of only a very few times when he was completely isolated from the day to day leadership of the civil rights movement. In this environment he was able to focus on completion of the book. 50+ years later, the book still holds some powerful parallels to our current political climate.

Quote:

It is important for the liberal to see that the oppressed person who agitates for his rights is not the creator of tension….How strange it would be to condemn a physician who, through persistent work and the ingenuity of his medical skills, discovered cancer in a patient. Would anyone be so ignorant as to say he caused the cancer? Through the skills and discipline of direct action we reveal that there is a dangerous cancer of hatred and racism in our society. We did not cause the cancer; we merely exposed it. Only through this kind of exposure will the cancer be cured.” – Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Where Do We Go from Here: Chaos or Community?

Sources:

https://kinginstitute.stanford.edu/encyclopedia/where-do-we-go-here-chaos-or-community

https://www.goodreads.com/work/quotes/2686535-where-do-we-go-from-here-chaos-or-community

Predatory Blending

Black History:  Special Delivery!!

Today, I came across a quote I shared on social media on “predatory blending”. It is just as true today as it was 11 years ago and inspired more reflection to flow from my pen:

Beware of “Predatory Blending”.  Your associations should embrace you not erase you. -Enid Gaddis, Black Mail Founder

I created the term, “predatory blending” to describe the assimilation that can be expected from black people or other people of color as we navigate, infiltrate, integrate, and situate ourselves in various settings from employment, entrepreneurship,  community involvement, civic engagement, education, etc.

There are times when our “acceptance” or even or “eligibility” for inclusion is based on our ability to assimilate. Assimilation leads to erasure. When assimilation is required for acceptance, the often hidden but powerful forces of “predatory blending” are at work.

Don’t allow your wisdom, wit, and work to be manipulated and re-worked so that your influence and imprint is watered down and unrecognizable. Don’t let systems and shysters mine the riches of your intellect and innovation co-opting it for causes that refuse to accept the totality and phenomenality of your essence and presence. Bring the fullness of YOU into these spaces. Refuse to be erased.

THIS IS NOT….

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Black History: Special Delivery!!

Journalist Charles Blow’s 6/7/20 New York Times article, Allies Don’t Fail Us Again shares a thought provoking quote. With recent protests, nationally and internationally calling for reform following the death of George Floyd, “This is not the social justice Coachella. This is not systemic racism Woodstock. This has to be a forever commitment, even after protest eventually subsides.” Power to his pen!

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