the great William Dukenfield famously replied, "Looking for loopholes".
Charles Pierce notes one of the everyday lies we are now all expected to go along with because every fucking thing has been bent crooked around Both Sides. But today is not every day. Today we mark a unique anniversary which limns that commonplace lie in a bright and terrible light:
As the president mounts the podium at the Lincoln Memorial today to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Dr. King's speech, we are reminded (ceaselessly) about one thing that Dr. King said in his address:I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.There it is. That's the great loophole. It is an otherwise unremarkable sentiment given the context of the entire address, but, for the people who almost certainly would have lined up on the other side of the movement in 1963, it subsequently has been used as an opening through which all manner of historically backsliding mischief has come a'wandering in, from "reverse discrimination" to Allan Bakke, to what is going on today with the franchise in too many places, to the reaction to the killing of Trayvon Martin and the acquittal of George Zimmerman. Modern conservatives have used that line to conscript Dr. King into their ideology, now that he's dead and unable to speak for himself. It's the only line in the speech that they remember. They sure as hell don't remember this part.It would be fatal for the nation to overlook the urgency of the moment. This sweltering summer of the Negro's legitimate discontent will not pass until there is an invigorating autumn of freedom and equality. Nineteen sixty-three is not an end, but a beginning. Those who hope that the Negro needed to blow off steam and will now be content will have a rude awakening if the nation returns to business as usual. There will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until the Negro is granted his citizenship rights. The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright day of justice emerges.This occurred as recently as today, when the longtime white-supremacist journal, National Review, poured the water over its own head and declared itself healed...
This shameless, monstrous, banal revisionism should come as no great shock to anyone.
After all, this is the same crowd that has erected lucrative, Christopath megachurch empires on reducing the whole of the teachings of Jesus Christ (Spoiler: It's mostly about poor people, outcasts and children) to a few brutally misinterpreted verses in Matthew about Investing!Your!Gold! and a few lines from Paul about how Teh Gays are icky.