That’s what $arah Palin, Glenn Beck, William Bennett and a whole bunch of other conservatives would have you believe. They tell us that King stood for freedom, liberty and limited government.
Conservatives love to proclaim “Bull Connor was a Democrat! And Martin Luther King was a Republican!”
Here’s just a few examples:
Martin Luther King’s Conservative Legacy from the conservative Heritage Foundation
The Conservative Virtues of Dr. Martin Luther King from the Heritage Foundation and William J. Bennett, the Book of Virtues author
And don’t miss this, from a black conservative:
King recognized the tyrannical nature of the government, and he would be standing shoulder to shoulder with Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh, Herman Cain, Allen West, and many others in an attempt to free not only blacks this time, but the entire nation from the very same government that was oppressing blacks during King’s lifetime.
Well, if there’s been any presidential candidate on a major party ticket who believed in those things since World War II, it was Barry Goldwater. And he was the nominee of the Republicans, allegedly King’s own party. So surely Martin Luther King must have voted for Barry Goldwater, right?
In fact, this “conservative Republican” denounced Goldwater in the strongest possible terms in a speech he gave after he won the Nobel Prize. He not only condemned Goldwater, he explicitly condemned Goldwater’s message of liberty, freedom and limited government:
Another indication that progress is being made was found in the recent presidential election in the United States. The American people revealed great maturity by overwhelmingly rejecting a presidential candidate who had become identified with extremism, racism, and retrogression. The voters of our nation rendered a telling blow to the radical right. They defeated those elements in our society which seek to pit white against Negro and lead the nation down a dangerous Fascist path.
Pretty odd talk coming from a conservative Republican, don’t you think? Goldwater never sought to pit whites against “Negroes”; he simply believed it was unconstitutional for the federal government to force anyone, black or white, to do business with people they didn’t want to do business with.
If you want to see something hilarious, read the whole article at that last link. After quoting King’s words about Goldwater, the conservative author then goes on to say that an older, wiser King would likely have been ashamed of himself for saying those things.
As I said the other day, conservatives prefer fairy tales to reality.
Right before he got shot, when he was older and presumably wiser, King was focusing on “a more just distribution of income”, etc. In other words, radical left wing, big government socialism. On August 31st, 1967 he declared in a speech that:
We have deluded ourselves into believing the myth that capitalism grew and prospered out of the Protestant ethic of hard work and sacrifices. The fact is that capitalism was built on the exploitation of black slaves and continues to thrive on the exploitation of the poor, both black and white, both here and abroad…the way to end poverty is to end the exploitation of the poor. Insure them a fair share of the government’s services and the nation’s resources. We must recognize that the problems of neither racial nor economic justice can be solved without a radical redistribution of political and economic power.
Yeah, I can just see a guy who talked about poor people having a right to their “fair share” of the nation’s resources calling Obama a socialist.
That was around the same time that King began demanding that the federal government provide everyone in the country with a minimum guaranteed income.
That’s right; forget about the minimum wage, which many conservatives oppose. King wanteda government guaranteed minimum income for everyone.
WASHINGTON — Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. had another dream: the guaranteed income.
Those careful about his legacy say the $120 million monument to him that’s finally nearing construction on the National Mall is all well and good. But as the nation commemorates King’s 81st birthday today, they say he should best be remembered for his career-long focus on the poor.
A year before his 1968 death in Memphis, in his “Where Do We Go From Here: Chaos or Community,” King wrote: “I am now convinced that the simplest solution to poverty is to abolish it directly by a now widely discussed measure: the guaranteed income.”
There’s your “conservative” Martin Luther King who stood for “liberty” and “freedom” and opposed “big government” and would be rallying against Obamacare with Glenn Beck and $arah Palin.
And there’s a whole lot more where this stuff came from.
How do conservatives say and write this stuff with a straight face? How do they look themselves in the mirror at night?
God help us.