Jones: King's Message, Legacy Reject Race-Baiting and Identity Politics
American civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (1929 – 1968) stands with his wife Coretta and New York City Mayor Robert F. Wagner as he is presented with the Medal of Honor of the City of N.Y., New York City, December 18, 1964. (Agence France Presse/Getty Images)
By Fmr. Rep. Vernon Jones | Monday, 18 January 2021 03:33 PM
Today, Mon. Jan. 18, 2021, as we celebrate the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, let us not forget the principles for which he stood — the sanctity of life and the family, the importance of violence-free protest and a healthy respect for the Constitution.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was a fighter.
He believed in fighting tirelessly on behalf of what was right, and on behalf of those who could not fight for themselves. That’s why I’m convinced Dr. King, like me, would be Republican if forced to choose between the two major parties.
A society is judged by how it treats its most vulnerable.
We must value the right to life for every American, including the unborn. Dr. King’s vision of the future is an America where each and every child has a chance to live the American Dream by playing by the rules.
That’s why I’m convinced Dr. King would support school choice and every child and parent’s right to determine their own future and economic outcome.
Dr. King also understood the importance of free and fair elections, as the very existence of a Democracy depends on a secure voting system. "Let us march on ballot boxes until race-baiters disappear from the political arena," Dr. King said on March 25, 1965 following the conclusion of the Selma march to Montgomery, Alabama.
Dr. King would spurn today’s Democrat Party’s radical leftward shift. Dr. King, a man of the cloth himself, would decry the modern Democratic Party’s radicalization and emerging Socialist wing.
It is my hope that President-Elect Joe Biden’s views on mass-incarceration has evolved since the 1990’s when he supported policies that decimated black communities and families across America.
In fact, it grew painfully clear throughout the 2020 campaign that Biden, along with the Democratic Party, was less interested in actually solving the problems faced by the Black community, than just highlighting them and laying blame at the feet of Republicans, as if it were a partisan issue.
The truth is — Biden, the Democratic Party and the entire permanent Washington political class benefits from the status quo. They promote a victimhood mentality in the Black community, and label anyone with a differing opinion or independent thought as a traitor to their own race, in order to keep the community "in line."
Remember Biden’s, "you ain’t Black," comment?
"If you have a problem figuring out whether you're for me or Trump, then you ain't black," Biden told the hosts of the popular Breakfast Club radio program in May.
Biden’s comments at the time revealed the arrogance, condescension, and racist mindset when it comes to how many in the Democratic Party perceive the Black community —you’re going to shut up and support us because that’s what is expected from you.
This shouldn’t shock anyone.
White liberals have long dictated who from Black America is allowed to have a voice at the table.
Let us pray that Biden, along with Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris and the entire incoming administration, offers a message of unity and togetherness thus ensuring the tens of millions of Americans who feel left out and forgotten are included in the national dialogue as we move forward as a nation.
The answers to America’s problems won’t be solved in Washington, D.C.
It is up to all of us to take a stand and voice our commitment to life, liberty and the right of every American to pursue a rich and fulfilling life.
I hope others are inspired by Dr. King’s commitment to changing the world for the better, through civic engagement, peaceful protest and an unyielding spirit.
Vernon Jones served as a State Representative in the Georgia House of Representatives from 2017 to 2021, and also (previously) from 1993 to 2001.