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Thursday, November 2, 2023
MRC Mad That Media Reminded People That MLK Was Liberal
Topic: Media Research Center

The 60th anniversary of the March on Washington, which featured Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have A Dream" speech, drew media attention -- as well as complaints from the the Media Research Center because people were reminded that King was a liberal and that some of the issues he fought against still exist today. Alex Christy complained in an Aug. 26 post:

The Saturday editions of ABC’s Good Morning America, NBC’s Today, and CBS Saturday Morning all focused on the festivities 60th anniversary of the March on Washington not just by recounting Martin Luther King Jr.’s famous “I Have A Dream” speech, but by assisting today’s organizers in portraying overcoming current progressive grievances as the next chapter in the fight for civil rights.

ABC’s Faith Abubéy was the worst offender. She recalled the events of 1963 and how “organizers say today this fight is in part about voter suppression, housing discrimination, police and racial violence, racial disparities when it comes to employment, education, and other basic civil rights.”

Adding in some commentary of her own, Abubéy took aim at the Supreme Court’s recent decisions, some of which had nothing to do with race, “The 60th anniversary of the March on Washington is, of course, happening in the wake of some controversial U.S. Supreme Court rulings in which affirmative action, student debt relief, and abortion rights were all gutted in recent terms.”

Apparently Abubéy really believes that not paying back your loans is a civil right or that the demise of affirmative action and abortion is in the same universe as the existence of segregation.


At no point did anyone on any of the three networks say contemporary voter suppression is a myth meant to scare people or wonder what any of the left’s contemporary culture wars have to do with 1963.

Christy's evidence that voter suppression is a "myth" is a link from Georgia election officials touting record election turnout after the passage of an "election integrity" law, but no evidence was presented to justify passage of the law in the first place given the almost complete lack of election fraud in the 2020 election.

Tim Graham used an Aug. 28 post to compain about a TV segment that reminded people that, yes, King was a liberal:

To mark the 60th anniversary of Martin Luther King's March on Washington, the CBS program Sunday Morning aired a commentary by left-wing New York Times columnist Charles Blow, who started out celebrating the speech as "iconic," but then turned on its idealism, touting that King later hardened to the left, focusing on systemic racism. All the leftists prefer the more radical late-Sixties King to the Kumbaya 1963 version.

Blow wanted to sound positive about the early speech: “It is a beautiful speech. It doesn`t so much demand as it encourages. It is a great American speech, perfect for America`s limited appetite for addressing America`s inequities, both racial and economic...It focuses more on the interpersonal and less on the systemic and structural.” But he was happy to explain King saw the error of this approach:


What this approach doesn't do is make any acknowledgement of racial progress since King's death in 1968. The Left insists that systemic racism has never ended, and America remains a terribly racist country.

Graham made no effort to prove that racism was compeltely eradicated after the 1960s.

Curtis Houck whined that the march and speech anniversary was marked in a post later that day:

From Saturday night through Monday morning, the “big three” networks of ABC, CBS, and NBC got weak knees over the 60th anniversary of the March on Washington and Martin Luther King Jr.’s I Have a Dream speech that, based on even a cursory view, was no more than a far-left political rally led in part by ethnic and racial arsonist, MSNBC host Al Sharpton. 

Even teachers union head Randi Weingarten was there, shouting like a raging lunatic! How that fit in other than ideology was beyond us. Our Alex Christy set the table by looking at the similarly comical coverage on Saturday morning.

The post-march goo started flowing on ABC’s World News Tonight with senior congressional correspondent Rachel Scott playing fill-in anchor and swooning in a tease:“The March on Washington turning 60. A new wave of support. Thousands gathering to walk in those same steps taken decades ago, and there were new demands for social, economic, and racial justice.”


CBS Weekend News came off as muted, painting the 2023 march was unobjectionable, led by “a new generation gathered to honor the call” of King.

Houck couldn't be bothered to explain what, exactly, was objectionable about this year's march.

In another Aug. 28 post, Brad Wilmouth groused that it was pointed out how Republicans are rewriting curriculam standards for black history were referenced in march anniversary coverage:

On Friday morning, CNN This Morning was again fearmongering about Republican changes to school curricula as the liberal news network gave attention to the 60th anniversary of the 1963 civil rights march in Washington, D.C. After a pre-recorded piece by reporter Jason Carroll, fill-in anchor Victor Blackwell declared that some are trying to "rob" American students of being taught about the Civil Rights Movement and black history.

Carroll's piece focused on veteran civil rights activists Courtland Cox and Edward Flanagan, both of whom took part in the historic 1963 march. Toward the end of the report, the CNN reporter cautioned: "Both agree while much was accomplished that day, the work is not over."

Graham returned to whine about all of this in his Aug. 28 podcast:

Leftists gathered to mark the 60th anniversary of Martin Luther King's March on Washington. As usual, the "objective" media picked up the hot talk about the conservatives "gutting" abortion rights, "affirmative action," and "student debt relief." The organizers were leftists, but reporters touted a diverse "spectrum" of activists.

On ABC, reporter Faith Abubey never said anyone was "leftist," or "progressive," or even "liberal." There were no labels. "Organizers say today this fight is in part about voter suppression, housing discrimination, police and racial violence, racial disparitieswhen it comes to employment, education, and other basic civil rights. The 60th anniversary of the March on Washington is, of course, happening in the wake of some controversial U.S. Supreme Court rulings in which affirmative action, student debt relief, and abortion rights were all gutted in recent terms."

An Aug. 30 post by Wilmouth complained all of this was still being talked about:

The topic was the 60th anniversary of Martin Luther King's March on Washington, but it became an unchallenged forum to lie about Governor Ron DeSantis over "banning books" and the teaching of black history in Florida.

Toward the end of the interview, Isaacson brought up the issue of the wealth gap between blacks and whites: "But 60 years later, wealth inequality in America is still as great -- the difference in wealth inequality between black and white. What does that say to you?"

Dyson ripped America for being a "hypocritical" nation and then took his first shot at DeSantis as he began his response:


"Memory," in their mind, is enacting a leftist agenda, to use the memory of slavery to spur reparation payments and other compensations. It was not mentioned that the anti-police activism supported by BLM and the liberal media led to a sharp increase in violent crime, which should undermine the moral halo networks like PBS always put around the leftist movement.

After this all-too-typical PBS interview concluded, host Christiane Amanpour appeared again and praised Dyson's commentary: "Such a powerful invocation against historical amnesia."

Wilmouth and his fellow MRCers, meanwhile, want us to have historical amnesia about how the (largely Southern) racists and segregationasts who refused to accept that the Democratic Party embraced the civil rights movement became Republicans.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:59 PM EDT

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