I was listening to CNN–I wasn't watching because I was typing up yet another Web item at the time–when I heard a plug for an upcoming news special.
I was told that Soledad O'Brien would give me the scoop ina weeklong series that "reveals the papers of MLK" For a moment, I wasn't sure what I had heard and what it was talking about, Burger King, multinational forces, Emil Kay, whoever that might be.
The next moment I looked up at the screen and saw the "MLK." My initial (pun intended) reaction, and the one that prompted this blog, was that it trivialized him to be reduced to initials in the promo. It was at once too familiar and impersonal.
Then I rethought, and decided that they were, instead, trying to give him the "JFK" iconic status that he actually deserves. King made peace sexy and strong, not an easy thing to do. Sometimes, dropping the big stick and talking is the strongest thing we can do.
"Got milk of human kindness?" (or should that be "mlk?"), He did, with enough to spare to try to get us all to change our drinking habits.
So I came full circle between the time my knee jerked and I started writing this item and the time I wrote the last word, which I just did.
By John Eggerton