What Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Would Have Wanted – The Daily Show
On Monday night, The Daily Show’s “Senior Black Correspondent” talked about people misappropriating Dr. King’s name and legacy for their political agendas. After my post yesterday (especially the update to that post), it just seemed too perfect.
Look, as long as we’re celebrating Dr. King’s birthday, I’d like to make one request: can we as a nation please, please stop using Martin Luther King as a prop in our own petty political arguments?
You mean about race?
No, no, no, Jon – about everything. Listen to what the chairman of National Gun Appreciation Day said last week.
Ok, let me stop you right there. He’s not alive today. Now, what was it that killed him? Hmm… I don’t know, Jon. Was it diabetes? (No, I don’t think it was diabetes.) Sandwich choke, maybe? (I don’t think so.) Was he mauled by lions on the porch of a Memphis hotel? (No, I’m sorry, but…) But I’m sorry, you were channeling Dr. King, please continue.
[clip of Larry Ward on CNN]
Yeah, slavery wouldn’t have been a chapter, it would have been a preface, all right. Followed by the chapter titled, “All the black people are dead, now who’s gonna build the country?”
You believe Martin Luther King would have favored gun control?
Now why would you say that, because it’s –
Mmm – on second thought, no he wouldn’t.
Okay, why would you say –
Wait, wait. Yeah, he would.
I’m just [bleep] with you, Jon. I have no idea. How am I supposed to know? Dr. King is dead, okay, so you don’t get to use him as your imaginary black “yes man.”
I guess it’s because, you know, Martin Luther King is help up in our culture as this unassailable good, so people try to make him –
I understand, but that doesn’t mean you can use him to endorse everything you happen to like. “You don’t like porn? You know who loved porn? Martin Luther King!”
Yeah, I remember his “Letters to Penthouse from the Birmingham Jail.” (laughter)
Are people being really that specific with King’s likes and dislikes?
Oh, yes, Jon. Look, this Arizona Congressman thinks he knows what MLK hated.
[Clip of Trent Franks (R-AZ) invoking King re: abortion in 1999]
I think it’s an outrage that your state spent 10 years fighting to not observe Dr. King’s birthday.
Oh, and [bleep] you, Arizona.
Now, if I’m not mistaken, I believe “[Bleep] you, Arizona,” is the state motto of Nevada.
I didn’t know that.
Yeah, that’s true.
That’s very interesting. Very informative, thank you, Jon.
Look, Jon, if we’re to believe the pundits, Martin Luther King would be the only pro-life, pro-gun guy at the Occupy Wall Street rally. Remember Occupy Wall Street?
[News footage of OWS, clip of Sally Kohn on Fox News claiming King would support OWS]
Oh, if only those Occupy folks could have had a living, breathing Civil Rights legend there with them. Oh wait, they did. John Lewis, MLK’s still-alive friend and colleague, was right there. Hmm, how’d that go?
[Clip of Occupy Atlanta declining Lewis’ offer to speak]
[Jon does “down twinkles,” an OWS hand signal representing disagreement or disapproval.]
I don’t know what to say.
I’m shocked, Jon. They missed a great chance to ask John Lewis what Martin Luther King would think of their movement.
Anyway, it’s not like we have to guess what King would say. Thanks to modern technology, we can make him endorse anything we want. Have you seen the commercial where hologram-MLK has a dream about telecommunications ?
[Clip from Alcatel commercial]
“I may not get to the mountain top, but the wi-fi there will be free at last!”