Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Manufactured Outrage

Conservatives have their panties in a twist today, this time because they don't think that we (liberals) were "civilized" enough during Coretta Scott King's funeral, particularly all the mean things that were said to Mr. Civil Rights, President Bush. Personally, I think Marty Kaplan and particularly Tom Tomorrow hit the nail on the head:

Pity the poor conservatives who hate being reminded that they’ve been on the wrong side of every civil rights struggle in our nation’s history. And in case there’s any doubt about whether these sentiments were in line with the beliefs of Mrs. King, here’s part of an interview she gave shortly before the Iraq war began:

BLITZER: Mrs. King, thank you so much for joining us. Let’s talk a little bit about the legacy of your husband. How much has the racial situation in our country improved since his death, if you believe, indeed, it has?

KING: Yes, I think it certainly has improved tremendously, but we still have much more to be done. Martin defined the evils and the injustices in our society in three areas — poverty, racism and war. And he said that we cannot solve one problem without solving the other, working to solve the other one. And I think we have remnants of all of those. We’ve made some small progress in some areas more than others, but we still very much have poverty. We still very much have racism. And we still very much have a threat of war.

BLITZER: You raised the issue earlier of war. Where do you think [your husband] would come down on the whole issue of possibly going to war with Iraq?

KING: You know, my husband always believed that there should be peaceful negotiations, and he believed in nonviolence. He was committed to it totally, and he believed that conflict should be handled through the United Nations, so strength in the United Nations, and let the United Nations take the leadership. And I believe that Martin would, if he were [alive] today — although I don’t normally speak for him, but I know what he was saying at the time of his death — is that war cannot serve any lasting good toward bringing about peace. If you use weapons of war to bring about peace, you’re going to have more war and destruction. You cannot have peaceful means — peaceful means will have to be used to bring about peaceful ends. If you use destructive means, you’re going to bring about destructive ends.
Where is it written that you are only supposed to speak in platitudes about the fragile nature of existence when you're at someone's funeral? You can laugh. You can cry. And you can most definitely talk about issues that person was interested in. One of those things at this funeral was civil rights, and guess what, Republicans? That's not so much in your wheelhouse. What did Bush expect?

No comments: