Friday, August 20, 2010

"King openly advocated quotas and racial set-asides"

Excerpt from Myths of Martin Luther King by Marcus Epstein

Myth #1: King wanted only equal rights, not special privileges and would have opposed affirmative action, quotas, reparations, and the other policies pursued by today’s civil rights leadership.

This is probably the most repeated myth about King. Writing on National Review Online, There Heritage Foundation’s Matthew Spalding wrote a piece entitled "Martin Luther King’s Conservative Mind," where he wrote, "An agenda that advocates quotas, counting by race and set-asides takes us away from King's vision."

The problem with this view is that King openly advocated quotas and racial set-asides. He wrote that the "Negro today is not struggling for some abstract, vague rights, but for concrete improvement in his way of life." When equal opportunity laws failed to achieve this, King looked for other ways. In his book Where Do We Go From Here, he suggested that "A society that has done something special against the Negro for hundreds of years must now do something special for him, to equip him to compete on a just and equal basis." To do this he expressed support for quotas. In a 1968 Playboy interview, he said, "If a city has a 30% Negro population, then it is logical to assume that Negroes should have at least 30% of the jobs in any particular company, and jobs in all categories rather than only in menial areas." King was more than just talk in this regard. Working through his Operation Breadbasket, King threatened boycotts of businesses that did not hire blacks in proportion to their population.

King was even an early proponent of reparations. In his 1964 book, Why We Can’t Wait, he wrote,

No amount of gold could provide an adequate compensation for the exploitation and humiliation of the Negro in America down through the centuries…Yet a price can be placed on unpaid wages. The ancient common law has always provided a remedy for the appropriation of a the labor of one human being by another. This law should be made to apply for American Negroes. The payment should be in the form of a massive program by the government of special, compensatory measures which could be regarded as a settlement in accordance with the accepted practice of common law.

Predicting that critics would note that many whites were equally disadvantaged, King claimed that his program, which he called the "Bill of Rights for the Disadvantaged" would help poor whites as well. This is because once the blacks received reparations, the poor whites would realize that their real enemy was rich whites.

A truly legitimate civil rights movement would see to it that the blacks return to Africa (where they belong) and where they can finally assume responsibility for themselves like a mature people. Instead they stay put here in the United States, the land of their real or imagined grievances, and continue to complain and agitate to shake down white America. Any irresponsible talk of reparations must be immediately rebuked by presenting the facts that once the United States subtracted what white America has foolishly given to black America they would owe us!

As Patrick Buchanan has written in "A brief for Whitey" -  "Untold trillions have been spent since the ’60s on welfare, food stamps, rent supplements, Section 8 housing, Pell grants, student loans, legal services, Medicaid, Earned Income Tax Credits and poverty programs designed to bring the African-American community into the mainstream."

Abraham Lincoln recognized blacks will never be a part of the mainstream and it's past time we face this reality too or continue to suffer the consequences:

"I will say, then, that I AM NOT NOR HAVE EVER BEEN in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the black and white races---that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of making voters or jurors of Negroes, nor of qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with White people; and I will say in addition to this that there is a physical difference between the White and black races which will ever FORBID the two races living together on terms of social and political equality. And inasmuch as they cannot so live, while they do remain together, there must be the position of superior and inferior, and I, as much as any other man, am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the White race."

— 4th Lincoln-Douglas debate, September 18th, 1858; COLLECTED WORKS Vol. 3, pp. 145-146