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Martin Luther King, Jr., I Have A Dream:
guy in the veal calf office (mail) (www):
I'd also recommend "Letter From Birmingham Jail. (.pdf)

I read it every Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and it restores my gratitude that many Americans define participation and activism as more than just shooting their mouth off. It is also incredibly well written and a model for legal writers.
1.21.2008 12:33pm
Steve H.:
King's last speech, the night before he was assassinated.
Shows a very different, almost dark, side of him..

King's last speech.
1.21.2008 1:08pm
Thoughtful (mail):
Steve H: King's last speech, the night before he was assassinated.
Shows a very different, almost dark, side of him..


It's almost as if he had been engaging in politics for several years...
1.21.2008 1:15pm
CrazyTrain (mail):
Well, I don't know what will happen now. We've got some difficult days ahead. But it doesn't matter with me now. Because I've been to the mountaintop. And I don't mind. Like anybody, I would like to live a long life. Longevity has its place. But I'm not concerned about that now. I just want to do God's will. And He's allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I've looked over. And I've seen the promised land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people will get to the promised land. And I'm happy, tonight. I'm not worried about anything. I'm not fearing any man. Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord.

Well, it was a very prophetic closing to his last speech. But I don't see why you consider it dark. I think that in the end it is very optimistic about America and viewing America as a place with a sort of biblical purpose.
1.21.2008 1:38pm
Mike Keenan:
Youtube has some links to the full speech as well. This version deletes some paragraphs in the middle, as well as some sentences. The audio quality of this version is very good though.

The language of this speech is remarkable.
1.21.2008 1:39pm
Archon (mail):
**Reading his college's internal affirmative action policy**

Too bad King's dream of not being judged by the color of your skin still hasn't been achieved today.
1.21.2008 1:51pm
GV:
Exactly Archon. The thing keeping King's dream from becoming a reality is affirmative action.

King favored affirmative action and saw nothing contradictory between that and his dream for a color-blind society. I think that's right. Corrective action via affirmative action is needed so that we can reach King's dream. The Government in this country kept African-Americans down for generations. To simply remove those barriers one day and say, hey, everybody is equal now, is absurd. The United States put its collective foot on the heads of African-Americans to keep them under water for long enough that I think it's fine that we use our collective hands to bring them up.

It's really incredible to think that King's message was controversial when he made it -- or that he even needed to make it. And it wasn't that long ago, about 40 years.
1.21.2008 2:03pm
TRE:
GV: So if a Nigerian prince with an MD comes to the US his kids should get preferential treatment in admissions?
1.21.2008 2:27pm
JosephSlater (mail):
MLK favored affirmative action.
1.21.2008 2:36pm
Elliot Reed (mail):
**Reading his college's internal affirmative action policy**

Too bad King's dream of not being judged by the color of your skin still hasn't been achieved today.
No, it sure hasn't. When white people stop being racist, we won't need affirmative action anymore. Sadly, that day seems to be a long way off. Thankfully, overt bigotry is now fairly rare, but all the research on the subject indicates that subtle prejudices and stereotypes remain widespread and very strong. That's why a resume with a stereotypically black name on it is vastly less likely to get a call for an interview than an identical resume with a name few black people have, black people get more severe sentences for the same crimes the more stereotypically black they look, etc. etc. etc. That kind of thing is harder to get rid of because it's so easy to engage in it without being aware of it at all.
1.21.2008 2:43pm
Ralph Phelan (mail):
Corrective action via affirmative action is needed so that we can reach King's dream. The Government in this country kept African-Americans down for generations. To simply remove those barriers one day and say, hey, everybody is equal now, is absurd.

For how long?

Jim Crow's been gone since 1965 or thereabouts. The people who suffered legally sanctioned racism are in their forties now.
1.21.2008 2:45pm
Ralph Phelan (mail):
subtle prejudices and stereotypes remain widespread and very strong. That's why a resume with a stereotypically black name on it is vastly less likely to get a call for an interview than an identical resume with a name few black people have

The prejudice and stereotype in this case is that the probably-black candidate is likely to be a total incompetent who's been scocially promoted" his whole life by organizations who need to keep their AA numbers up.
1.21.2008 2:47pm
Elliot Reed (mail):
Jim Crow's been gone since 1965 or thereabouts. The people who suffered legally sanctioned racism are in their forties now.
Because what, suffering from racism is perfectly OK as long as it's not (officially) government-sanctioned racism?
1.21.2008 2:56pm
Elliot Reed (mail):
The prejudice and stereotype in this case is that the probably-black candidate is likely to be a total incompetent who's been scocially promoted" his whole life by organizations who need to keep their AA numbers up.
I suggest you stop trying to prove my point by providing yourself as an example.
1.21.2008 2:59pm
common sense (www):
The problem with affirmative action is that it enables and in some cases encourages racism. It is too easy to point to a minority and say they only have their position because of AA, especially in cases where its decidedly not true.
1.21.2008 3:05pm
DJR:

The prejudice and stereotype in this case is that the probably-black candidate is likely to be a total incompetent who's been scocially promoted" his whole life by organizations who need to keep their AA numbers up.


Yes, that's exactly what happened to a lawyer I heard of named Clarence Thomas. His J.D. from Yale was completely worthless and he never amounted to anything.

Oh wait...
1.21.2008 3:07pm
Bad (mail) (www):
It's kind of startling to think how radically human civilization has changed in the last century or so. For pretty much the first time in all of human history, the idea that men and women of all races are legal and moral equals is not only taken seriously but is the default view in most of the modern world. Racialism, at the very least, has been a core principle of nearly every society to some degree or another... until just this last century, where the idea began to crumble and is no longer taken seriously. The same goes for sexism. Anyone that can come up with an explanation for why such radical social shifts happened in this very particular time and place, and happened, really with pretty much a whimper rather than a "shake the culture to its core" bang one might expect, will probably go down among the greats when it comes to historical/social scholarship.
1.21.2008 3:16pm
Bottomfish (mail):
In connection with the familiar statement that black lawbreakers get more severe sentences than whites who commit similar offenses -- OK, maybe so. Then why is it that the Jena Six case fizzled out? Why can't activists find a convincing example?
1.21.2008 3:24pm
JSinAZ:

When white people stop being racist, we won't need affirmative action anymore. Sadly, that day seems to be a long way off.


Mr. Reed, would you care to name a "race" who are not in some fraction "racist"?
1.21.2008 3:32pm
JohnAnnArbor:

When white people stop being racist, we won't need affirmative action anymore.

I think a LOT of people are getting tired of being accused repeatedly of racism, based on (wait for it!) race alone.
1.21.2008 3:37pm
Mary Katherine Day-Petrano (mail):
Martin Luther King HAD a Dream. The Dream has never been fulfilled ...

due to globalization, tax cutting-economy destroying conservative Republicans, DOJ's refusal to vigorously fund and enforce civil rights laws, Barry Sabin's ongoing efforts to label those who seek to enforce the civil rights Dream as terrorists subject to surveillance and ongoing Sabin-originated crimes and torts committed by law enforcement and their CIs against those seeking to enforce civil rights to stamp out the Dream.

THAT is why its past time to vote for Obama and CHANGE.
1.21.2008 3:38pm
JohnAnnArbor:
And I think a LOT of people are tired of race-neutral policy disagreements constantly being twisted into accusations of racism.
1.21.2008 3:41pm
Ralph Phelan (mail):
Because what, suffering from racism is perfectly OK as long as it's not (officially) government-sanctioned racism?

Government is not omnipotent, Heaven on Earth is not a practical policy goal, and blacks are not the only people ever to experience unfair treatment.

Asking the government to give special benefits to those harmed by the governments own actions is one thing. But asking it to counteract the effects of unfair treatment it did not itself dish out, but only if the victim is black, is unfair. And asking it to counteract the effects of any unfair treatment anybody anywhere ever experienced is asking the impossible.
1.21.2008 3:43pm
Thoughtful (mail):
DJR bemoans "a lawyer I heard of named Clarence Thomas. His J.D. from Yale was completely worthless and he never amounted to anything"

Au contraire. He actually did fairly well, becoming a member of the Supreme Court. Sadly, though, many who label themselves liberal blame it on his being chosen because of his race. It is good to know so many liberals oppose affirmative action (if only for filling Supreme Court positions).

And yet many posters above think it bizarre to claim black job applicants might be overlooked due to affirmative action. They seem to believe, then, that the thoughts they have concerning Clarence Thomas' fitness would never occur to businessmen evaluating other blacks for less august opportunities.
1.21.2008 3:45pm
Sean M:
While this discussion thread spirals into a debate about affirmative action, let me just say:

Wow. I wish I could make a speech like that.

Oratory is a beautiful, powerful thing which has sadly become devalued in recent years.

"I Have a Dream" is a thing of beauty and deserves the place it has in American history.
1.21.2008 3:47pm
DeezRightWingNutz:
I find PSAs about racial housing discrimination comically ironic. They're of a piece with the "stereotypically black name" on the resume studies.

The PSA goes like this...

A man repeatedly calls up to inquire about a "for rent" ad, but he does so using a few different names and accents. One is the nerdy-souding Herman DeGraff. One is the smooth Evan Bishoff. They're told that apartments are still available. Then "black" Leonard Washington is on the line, and when he asks about the availability of apartments, he's told that they're taken.

How can a telephone conversation indicate racism if the race of the caller isn't known? Doesn't it indicate voicism, or namism? What's more, I suspect same actor is doing all the voices. If he's black, isn't that proof that the landlord will rent to black people with names like Herman and Evan? If he's white, doesn't that mean the landlord discrimiates against white people named Leonard Washinton?

I mean, the person who's not living up to the colorblind ideal is the person who puts on the ad, and assumes that jive talking Leonard must be black, and nerdy Herman must be white, right?
1.21.2008 3:48pm
Ralph Phelan (mail):
common sense:

The problem with affirmative action is that it enables and in some cases encourages racism. It is too easy to point to a minority and say they only have their position because of AA, especially in cases where its decidedly not true.


I'm not sure I follow that last bit.

I'd agree that it's easier to be unfair to a minority group member with the AA claim if in fact the claim is not true.

On the other hand, the "He's only there because of AA" claim is far less likely to be believed when it isn't true, and far more likely to be believed when it's the only parsimonious answer to the question "How did that bozo get that position?!?!"
1.21.2008 3:52pm
David M. Nieporent (www):
MLK favored affirmative action.
When MLK was alive, affirmative action meant the exact opposite of what it does now. It meant non-discrimination, not racial preferences.
1.21.2008 3:52pm
Archon (mail):
Mary Katherine Day-Petrano said:

Martin Luther King HAD a Dream. The Dream has never been fulfilled ...

due to globalization, tax cutting-economy destroying conservative Republicans, DOJ's refusal to vigorously fund and enforce civil rights laws...


I love how every MLK day, King's vision becomes a "living breathing document" that seems to mirror the current democratic platform. Heck, I heard one MLK day speaker claim that in order to "live the dream" we had to do something about global warming. The concept of "global warming" wasn't even around in King's day. At that time, it was called "global cooling" and we were headed into the next ice age.
1.21.2008 3:53pm
Elliot Reed (mail):
Asking the government to give special benefits to those harmed by the governments own actions is one thing. But asking it to counteract the effects of unfair treatment it did not itself dish out, but only if the victim is black, is unfair.
Actually, we have these "laws" and "courts" which permit the government to redress wrongs inflicted by private parties on both black and non-black people.
1.21.2008 4:26pm
John R. Mayne (mail):
MLK moved civil rights forward in a positive way, and he did so in time and place that posed personal risk. His dream of equal treatment has come much closer, and he personally moved society far forward in reaching that dream.

The partisan bickering on this thread isn't surprising, but it does disappoint. I salute the man and the progress he advanced.

--JRM
1.21.2008 4:30pm
Eric Atkinson (mail):
I too had a dream... something about my ancestors picking their own damn cotton.
1.21.2008 4:52pm
JohnAnnArbor:
One post today? Geez, you're acting like there's a day off or something... ;)
1.21.2008 5:04pm
MarkField (mail):

When MLK was alive, affirmative action meant the exact opposite of what it does now. It meant non-discrimination, not racial preferences.


This is not true. It meant providing greater assistance to those who'd been held down so long. In Johnson's famous metaphor, we can't chain down some runners for years, then break the chains and tell them they're free to compete "equally" with those now far ahead.
1.21.2008 5:05pm
Archon (mail):
John R. Mayne -

In case you just missed it, MLK day is a political holiday full of "partisan bickering." It is routinely used by the left to push their agenda while wrapping it in the image of MLK to make it appear non-political. Just today, in speeches around campus and in the media I have heard the following issues plugged, all with a liberal bent:

Affirmative Action
Responsible Taxing (code word for tax raises for certain income levels)
Urban Renewal
The War in Iraq
Welfare

What do these really have to do with honoring the image of a man?
1.21.2008 5:08pm
Hoosier:
I'm a conservative, and a supporter of AA. So I'm gonna let this debate slide.

But that is on hell of a speech. I initially wished that the holliday were not MLK Day, but rather something along the lines of Civil Rights Movement Day. (Lousy title, I know.) But King would no doubt have said that the progress that was made could not have been made without the work of many, many people.

In the end, though, people are celebrating the movement with King Day. So mission accomplished.

Shows what I know.
1.21.2008 5:11pm
Houston Lawyer:
When I applied to law school 27 years ago, affirmative action was in full swing, with vastly different criteria applied to Blacks and Whites. Today it is exactly the same.

Many posters here will be fighting to keep my children out of the best schools bacause of their race over the next two decades. I believe many will continue to call my children racist for wanting fair treatment. The race hucksters of today differ little from those who enacted Jim Crow.
1.21.2008 5:14pm
Hoosier:
Mrk Field--OK. You've lured me in. And I think you are right about King's view of AA.

What frustrates me as an academic is that there is a marked tendency for college faculty to decide their department needs a black person. So they add an AA line. Which is fine.

EXCEPT that they then pat themselves on the back for having made a difference. But they've done nothing for the people who have been most seriously injured by past policies: Those black people trapped in the unrban underclass. Often just a few miles from campus.

So to clarify: I have no objection to affirmative action hiring. But I don't want to let people off the hook, as if the fight for racial justice is as easy as voting on a committee. If you are "for" justice, you have to do something for the people who have been hurt the most. The primary problem with AA is that it is viewed in such a limited way by its loudest proponents.


Also sprach Hoosier
1.21.2008 5:19pm
Bad (mail) (www):
"What do these really have to do with honoring the image of a man?"

Uh, because they're all things he supported and championed? :)
1.21.2008 5:36pm
U.Va. 3L:
Well said, Hoosier.
1.21.2008 5:39pm
Mary Katherine Day-Petrano (mail):
"Government is not omnipotent, Heaven on Earth is not a practical policy goal, and blacks are not the only people ever to experience unfair treatment."

That right... According the The Florida Bar's sitting President (announced at the June 2007 Annual Meeting in Outreach Committee) 'White men need special preferences.'
1.21.2008 5:53pm
GV:
TRE wrote: "So if a Nigerian prince with an MD comes to the US his kids should get preferential treatment in admissions?"

Often times a corrective action is going to be over inclusive; that's not per se a reason not to take corrective action. We knew that by joining up in World War II, we would harm at least one innocent civilian. Our response to the injustice would be over inclusive, as that innocent person would obviously not deserve his or her fate. But that would not be a per se reason not to fight. Perhaps most people who are helped by affirmative action are Nigerian princes and therefore affirmative action would be so over inclusive as to not advance our correction goal at all. But you haven't provided any data to support that kind of argument. Instead, you seem to think the mere fact that affirmative action will not always serve the corrective goal means we shouldn't have the program. That doesn't make any sense.

David M. Nieporent, if you're truly interested in MLK's views on affirmative action (and how they're not as you describe them), simply google "martin luther king affirmative action."
1.21.2008 5:58pm
Elliot Reed (mail):
Many posters here will be fighting to keep my children out of the best schools bacause of their race over the next two decades. I believe many will continue to call my children racist for wanting fair treatment. The race hucksters of today differ little from those who enacted Jim Crow.
Are you talking about affirmative action here? 'cause if you are then you need to stop digging your hole deeper. Even accepting for the sake of argument that affirmative action is wrongful, there is no way it compares to the exclusionary policies of Jim Crow, whether in motive or effect.
1.21.2008 5:59pm
common sense (www):
Ralph,
In my experiences with such mudslinging, its more likely to be slung against well qualified minorities. I have a lot of suppositions about why that is. Maybe the most obvious is that someone who is inherently racist feels more of a need to justify a minority being in a position of power above them that someone who is obviously a beneficiary of AA due to incompetence. And, when that rumor filters through to people who don't get to work with the minority closely, it can carry weight.
1.21.2008 6:06pm
JohnAnnArbor:
And, how long will it go on, this segmenting by race?

Who judges which people are each race?
1.21.2008 6:11pm
david spates (www):
I made a Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day video that I think EVERYONE will enjoy. It's really short, and should put a smile on your face.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=AtugYg42mmc

David Spates
1.21.2008 6:15pm
JohnAnnArbor:
And who determines what outcome is desirable? Is there a High Commissioner for Racial Ratios who sets targets?
1.21.2008 6:17pm
Mary Katherine Day-Petrano (mail):
corr: attribution:

According the The Florida Bar's sitting President (announced at the June 2007 Annual Meeting in Outreach Committee) 'White men need special preferences.'

~ Francisco R. Angones, Florida Republican GOP

I was there -- I personally heard it firsthand.

And, in that light, we now have the 2000 &2004 Presidential election crowd using the Republican GOP to carry forth their absurd (inaccurate) *new age Republican* spin to discredit MLK's Dream:

"I love how every MLK day, King's vision becomes a 'living breathing document' that seems to mirror the current democratic platform"

"In case you just missed it, MLK day is a political holiday full of "partisan bickering." It is routinely used by the left to push their agenda while wrapping it in the image of MLK to make it appear non-political. Just today, in speeches around campus and in the media I have heard the following issues plugged, all with a liberal bent:

Responsible Taxing (code word for tax raises for certain income levels)

Welfare"

For all you *new age Republicans* born after Ronald Reagan was inaugurated, you really need to learn your American history -- correct your wayward path and get back to your Republican roots:

Dwight Eisenhower, Republican President, brought Leave It To Beaver-style quality of life and prosperity to ALL Americans by maintaining a 91% tax rate on the wealthiest Americans. And Ike didn't live in a McMansion.

See Volokh thread discussion (a rel="nofollow" href="http://volokh.com/posts/1200791401.shtml">HERE

It is such a shame the A-B-C-D standardized testing fad has dumbed-down America.
1.21.2008 6:18pm
louisvillelawyer (mail):
reading this comment thread and other "conservative" polemics lately sometimes makes we want to give up . . . affirmative action promoters = Jim Crow, liberalism = fascism (jonah goldberg's latest offering)??? How do you deal with people who aren't living in reality?
1.21.2008 6:18pm
louisvillelawyer (mail):
should be "makes me want to give up"

and to Mary Katherine: yes the ahistorical fantasyland these types live in is really amazing. Those who do not know history are doomed to repeat it . . . scary thought.
1.21.2008 6:22pm
JohnAnnArbor:
And woe be to the too-successful. Before Prop 209, being Asian was a BAD THING when applying to college in California. Too many, you see, according to the powers-that-be. Berkeley's complex scale made it harder for Asians to get in than whites. (Except for Filipinos; they still were favored a bit.)

All garbage. Treat people as individuals, not groups.
1.21.2008 6:24pm
Houston Lawyer:
Implicit in today's affirmative action is the notion that the Black man isn't equal to the White man so we have to have different standards for him. The proponents of AA also see it as necessary to demonize an entire race as born oppressors. It would be interesting to run psychological tests on this group similar to the ones done on Black children back in the 50s who were subject to Jim Crow.

Most of us who had no part in the suppression of Black people don't harbor guilt about it. It would be racist for me to identify with such suppressors with whom I share little other than skin color.
1.21.2008 6:26pm
JohnAnnArbor:
I'd be interested to hear how much that tax actually took in. My guess, offhand, is that it was a low percent of federal revenue.
1.21.2008 6:30pm
Justin (mail):
"The race hucksters of today differ little from those who enacted Jim Crow."

Regardless of the merits of affirmative action, this statement is just about the most indefensible thing I've ever heard.
1.21.2008 6:30pm
JohnAnnArbor:
One of the most illuminating moments in college was when a resident assistant came along, all excited. She explained that they'd gotten a real catch for the computer-maintenence position in the dorm next year (a resident in charge of maintaining the computer cluster and network.)

Was he a nice guy? Was he really good with computers? What?

Turns out all she cared about was that he was Native American. Not the person himself, just the label. "How exciting!"

How dehumanizing.
1.21.2008 6:37pm
Mary Katherine Day-Petrano (mail):
"reading this comment thread and other "conservative" polemics lately sometimes makes we want to give up . . . affirmative action promoters = Jim Crow, liberalism = fascism (jonah goldberg's latest offering)??? How do you deal with people who aren't living in reality" ---->

End the fantasyland standardized test fad, and re-instate performance tests predicated on essential functions actually performed.

These *new age Republican* spin artists don't live in reality because they learned their fantasy World from all the "limited choice" A-B-C-D subset "teaching-to-the-test" myopia that prevented them from ever having to learn critical thinking skills necessary to ascertain if the subset in which they were lost was even relevant in the Big Picture. (i.e., they cannot spot for threshold outcome-determinative prerequisite issues). That's why they all follow each other off a cliff.

ll, I totally agree with you. And I highly doubt these fantasy fairyland *new age Republicans* living in their own lala land even know what "Jim Crow" laws are. It wasn't on the standardized reading/math test they had to take K-12.

But I can assure you Jim Crow laws are still alive in Florida. Florida Courts, Bar Examiners, and The Florida Bar are as vicious in refusing access to the disabled by enforcing the ADA as if they are still battling Virgil Hawkins circa to 1976 --

e.g., Justice England draft opinion &Florida Bar brief, written to deny Virgil his Florida Bar admission 'until he turns white' or 'the KKK rides out of Gainsville.'

Fortunately Justice Hatchett could not let the travesty of continue.

But these *new age Republican* spin artists and the Florida Republican GOP want to turn back the clock and kill forever MLK's Dream to reinstate 'white men need special preferences' ideology.

Isn't it incredible that no coalition of (1) African Americans, (2) women, and/or (3) the disabled have come together to file any recall Petition against Francisco R. Angones to remove him from his Florida Bar Presidency for enacting such an inappopriate policy? And Florida Bar members are proud, evidently, to have a leader who believes 'white men need special preferences?"

And where is the DOJ, civil rights division to change this Florida Bar reinstated 'white men need special preferences' policy that has taken hold in Florida, now threatening to spread across the Nation?

Just like Ward Connerly's efforts to abolish affirmative action in California's UC university system to eliminate minorities from law schools, the Bar, and Bench.

Only Florida wants to eliminate all African Americans, all women, all disabled -- by abolishing the Dream entirely.
1.21.2008 6:45pm
JohnAnnArbor:
Mary Katherine Day-Petrano, you sound full of hate. Deep, blind hatred is in your soul.

I want people treated EQUALLY. Period. Don't put words in the mouths of people you don't even know, bringing up obscure cases to try to say all whites are racist.
1.21.2008 6:47pm
KeithK (mail):
So Ike supported 91% tax rates (or at least didn't try to lower them, I don't know). That doesn't change the fact that such levels of taxation are punitive and wrong.
1.21.2008 6:48pm
JohnAnnArbor:

Just like Ward Connerly's efforts to abolish affirmative action in California's UC university system to eliminate minorities from law schools, the Bar, and Bench.

Is your claim that they can't make it on their own? How does treating people equally abolish anyone?
1.21.2008 6:49pm
louisvillelawyer (mail):
But don't all conservatives want to go back to the 1950's????:) just kidding
1.21.2008 6:52pm
David M. Nieporent (www):
This is not true. It meant providing greater assistance to those who'd been held down so long. In Johnson's famous metaphor, we can't chain down some runners for years, then break the chains and tell them they're free to compete "equally" with those now far ahead.
And yet, it is true. The phrase "affirmative action" is generally attributed to an Executive Order issued by Johnson. His EO 11246 ordered all government contracts to include the following language:
The contractor will not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, creed, color, or national origin. The contractor will take affirmative action to ensure that applicants are employed, and that employees are treated during employment, without regard to their race, creed, color, or national origin.

[...]

The contractor will, in all solicitations or advertisements for employees placed by or on behalf of the contractor, state that all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, creed, color, or national origin.
It also authorized the government to penalize those who disobeyed this:
Cancel, terminate, suspend, or cause to be cancelled, terminated, or suspended, any contract, or any portion or portions thereof, for failure of the contractor or subcontractor to comply with the nondiscrimination provisions of the contract.


LBJ wasn't actually the first to use the phrase. Kennedy used it in an Executive Order also -- 10925. His said: His was primarily about government employment rather than government contracting, and said:
WHEREAS it is the plain and positive obligation of the United States Government to promote and ensure equal opportunity for all qualified persons, without regard to race, creed, color, or national origin, employed or seeking employment with the Federal Government and on government contracts; and

[...]

The contractor will not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, creed, color, or national origin. The contractor will take affirmative action to ensure that applicants are employed, and that employees are treated during employment, without regard to their race, creed, color, or national origin.
1.21.2008 6:52pm
CrazyTrain (mail):
When I applied to law school 27 years ago, affirmative action was in full swing, with vastly different criteria applied to Blacks and Whites. Today it is exactly the same.

That's not true. It may be true in Houston or in Texas in general but here in California, we abolished race-based preferences in law schools -- at least in public law schools -- and the number of minority entrants (and applicants) went down substantially. Whether that's a good thing or not, I will leave to others, but to say that nothing has changed is absurd and wrong.

By the way, the tone of this thread is really too much for the topic. Complaining about the politicization of MLK is funny when it is coming from posters who are doing exactly that.
1.21.2008 6:52pm
David M. Nieporent (www):
That's not true. It may be true in Houston or in Texas in general but here in California, we abolished race-based preferences in law schools -- at least in public law schools -- and the number of minority entrants (and applicants) went down substantially.
Yes, if minority is defined as a special subset of minority to only count ones whose numbers went down, and if schools only include a few schools.
1.21.2008 7:03pm
Mary Katherine Day-Petrano (mail):
John Arbor "Mary Katherine Day-Petrano, you sound full of hate. Deep, blind hatred is in your soul.

I want people treated EQUALLY. Period. Don't put words in the mouths of people you don't even know, bringing up obscure cases to try to say all whites are racist." --->

No, I do not have any hatred toward anyone. But I am not about to roll over and bee a doormat for all those who want civil rights and the Dream to die. Obviously, your ad hominem attack is indicative of you membership in THAT crowd. You probably work for Barry Sabin.

And, no, don't patronize those who believe in civil rights and liberties that you "want people treated equally." If you really believed so, you would be demonstrating your beliefs by your acts and conduct, and be the forst one to draft the Angones recall Petition or initiate a civil rights Consent Decree on The FLorida Bar with DOJ.

Unfortunately, you are all smoke and mirros, huff and puff, and hot air. And no action.

FYI, Francisco R. Angones annnouced policy occurred less than ONE YEAR AGO at The Florida Bar's Annual Meeting, where he was sworn-in by his friend, Hon. Chief Justice R. Fred Lewis, within hours of making and not retracting such an outrageous 'white men need special preferences' policy.

And Hon. Chief Justice R. Fred Lewis has admitted thru his State Court Adminsitrator, Elisabeth Goodner, to knowingly excluding disabled assistive technology users from access to Florida State Courts in violation of Title II of the ADA, Fla. Const. Art. 1, Sec. 21, and the law of the Land, Tennessee v. Lane, 2004 U.S. LEXIS 3386 (2004).

White men need special preferences,

and

NO access to the Florida Courts for disabled assistive technology users (blind screen readers, autism voice recognition, etc).

Last I looked at the calendar, 2007 &2008 are the MODERN ERA, the above policies discriminate against MILLIONS of people, and do not constitute some "obscure case."

Isn't this the FLORIDA that is hosting a Republican primary NEXT WEEK ??????

The Republican primary of ... "white men need special preferences" and blind people and persons with autism have NO right to access in Florida Courts.

If you or any other Republican do not agree that you are among the "racist whites" responsible for the above policies, then you can act to condemn such racism/bigotry by BOYCOTTING the Florida Republican GOP primaries.
1.21.2008 7:04pm
Jim Rhoads (mail):
David beat me to it. He has quoted the official policy of Affirmative Action extant when MLK's made his magnificent speech.

The language is unambiguous.

For those who believe AA means preferential treatment to anyone on account of race, please parse the language of the JFK and LBJ Executive Orders and get where you want to go.

No amendments or elisions, please.
1.21.2008 7:23pm
MarkField (mail):
Hoosier, I agree with your 5:19 post.

DMN, you need to stop taking bits and pieces of history as though they amount to the whole. The specific EOs you mention hardly constitute the whole understanding of AA in the 60s. Nor do they in any way provide evidence of how MLK understood the term.

You're free to take whatever position you want to regarding AA. But please stop trying to sell us a bill of goods about what King believed.
1.21.2008 7:23pm
Mary Katherine Day-Petrano (mail):
"So Ike supported 91% tax rates (or at least didn't try to lower them, I don't know). That doesn't change the fact that such levels of taxation are punitive and wrong." --->

"Wrong" according to whom? The big bellied SUV gas guzzling fashion statement getting mortgage lender welfare to squat in the McMansion he/she KNEW was unaffordable? LOL.

You can have you opinion, but KNOW the 91% tax rates on the wealthy Americans WORKED! Can't argue with success in the face of the current 2008 economic meltdown downward spiralling failure to ruin.

Crazy Train "It may be true in Houston or in Texas in general but here in California, we abolished race-based preferences in law schools" ---->

WHO do you think your foolin? someone you assume never lived in California? Get a grip ...

BEFORE Francisco R. Angones "white men need special preferences" policy, Hon. R. Fred Lewis' ratification of the same by failing to required Angones to publicly retract such inappropriate policy before being sworn-in as President of The Florida Bar, and Hon. R. Fred Lewis' own policy carried forth thru the Florida State Courts Administrator, Elisabeth Goodner, whom Hon. chief Justice supervises, blind people and persons with autism have NO right to access in Florida Courts, came ...

Hon. Chief Justice Ronald M. George's inappropriate policy announced by his California Supreme Court Clerk Olrich to a Florida Bar member that I personally heard firsthand, 'You mean we have to scribe or place in written format pleadings for people without aroms, quadraplegia, and persons with learning disabilities/autism? No, we're not going to license anyone as an attorney in California who uses and assistive technology device.'

Interestingly, these inappropriate policies clearly and indisputably violating MILLIONS of Americans civil rights werre maintained under the supervision of the attorney who represented both California and Florida in Federal Court, Middle District of Florida:

POTUS 43's Florida Election Lawyer, Barry Richard of Greenberg Traurig.

EVEN MORE reason for any Republican who does not agree that he/she is among the "racist whites" responsible for the above policies, then you can act to condemn such racism/bigotry by BOYCOTTING the Florida Republican GOP primaries. ... as well as California's GOP Republican primaries.
1.21.2008 7:25pm
Mary Katherine Day-Petrano (mail):
corr: re: Hon. Chief Justice Ronald M. George's inappropriate policy announced by his California Supreme Court Clerk Olrich, 'You mean we have to scribe or place in written format pleadings for people without arms, quadraplegia, and persons with learning disabilities/autism? No, we're not going to license anyone as an attorney in California who uses an assistive technology device.'
1.21.2008 7:28pm
JohnAnnArbor:
I'm from Michigan. Why I should have to respond to some specific idiocy from Florida is beyond me. But you are full of hate, assuming I want to "roll things back." Equal treatment means equal treatment. Period. Not a difficult concept, unless all you see is color.
1.21.2008 7:30pm
Mary Katherine Day-Petrano (mail):
JohnAnnArbor -- "I'm from Michigan. Why I should have to respond to some specific idiocy from Florida is beyond me. But you are full of hate, assuming I want to 'roll things back.'" --->

No, I already stated "hate" is not in my vocabulary or my soul, as you choose to maliciously mischaracterize under you contining ad hominem attack against my viewpoint and overall integrity. You also harbor the odd notion that Michigan should suceed from the Union seeking to fulfill MLK's Dream and reinstating Ike's tax rates to bring about this equality with which you vehemently disagree.

My message is full of hope/courage/insight that MLK's Dream will be fulfilled when:

1. Americans vote to eliminate the gap between rich and poor, black and white, men and women, disabled and nondisabled, advantaged and disadvantaged; and

2. vote to condemn the self-rightous and pompous McMansion dweller/tax cutter bigotry we are experienceing on this thread, in our State Bars &Bench, and all around us in our wayward modern GOP Republican ranks.

The Eisenhower 91% income tax era on the wealthy leading toward the legacy of achievement of Martin Luther King's Dream was not that long ago.

Let's talk about how irrelevant Ike was (your implications, not mine): Five-Star General, West Point; War Hero of a WINNING war; two-term United States President in the modern nuclear age; a full blown vibrant successful economy with cirtually no homeless and highly affordable gas pump prices around 12-13 cents a gallon; America was not under invasion-seige by countless millions of illegal aliens; everyone had a pension and earned union scale wages; solid as granite public infrustructure including a brand new Interstate highway system; strongest military/National defense of any Country imaginable; no terrorism.

No Guantamos, Abu Gharaibs, or similar mindless mischief committed by our own government on innocent Americans simply trying to achieve the fullment of the civil rights equality Dream for all. ~ MLK
1.21.2008 7:57pm
Jim Rhoads (mail):
Mark:

MLK gave his speech before the Civil RIghts Act of 1964 was passed. The speech was understood as a plea to enact that legislation. As of that date, there was only one understanding of the term "Affirmative Action".

That phrase derived from the language in those two Executive Orders David cited. Those Orders applied to most significant government contractors of the day, and were well known to require activities to prevent discrimination in the work place. There were regulations promulgated which applied to all government contractors which forbade discrimination in the workplace well before the passae of Title VII.

These EO's or their implementing regulations did not require discrimination in favor of members of one group over another. Nor did they countenance it.

By way of background, I worked in Human Resources for a defense contractor from 1961-1962, and specialized in that area as a law clerk in a labor law section of a large law firm while in law school from 1962-1965. While a lawyer in the Army from 1966-1970, and while a litigator in employment law in 1970-1974. I handled a number of significant cases during that time period. I think I have a pretty good working knowledge of the state of the law of employment discrimination and affirmative action during the perod from 1961-1974.

If you have evidence to the contrary, I sure would be interested in it, as this is an area I have spent a lot of time with. Reading your emphatic note, I am wondering whether I imagined all this history.
1.21.2008 7:58pm
Mary Katherine Day-Petrano (mail):
corr: "cirtually"= virtually
1.21.2008 7:59pm
frankcross (mail):
I'm at a loss for how this thread came to tax rates. But the 91% tax rate did not work. First, it was the nominal tax rate, but the code was full of loopholes and the actual tax rate was much less. Second the Eisenhower years were quite mediocre economically. When Kennedy reduced the top rate to 70% (the real rate remained much less because of loopholes), the economy took off.
1.21.2008 8:29pm
Bert Campaneris (mail):
Memo to the conspirators: perhaps next year you can have two posts on MLK day. One so people can simply profess their admiration for the man and another where folks can dig into topics that MLK addressed and remain unresolved.

Not that I am very confident that it will work perfectly, but it would have to be better than the mess above.

In any case, thanks for the link. It never hurts to spend a little more time admiring greatness, and when it comes to public speaking, their were few better than Dr. King.
1.21.2008 8:34pm
JohnAnnArbor:
All people under government mandate to have same income = communism.

Just FYI.

And I very much want Michigan to succeed. Unfortunately, we have an idiot governor and legislature who just raised taxes on us even though we have the worst economy in the nation, including states that got hit by hurricanes. And 30,000 people left the state last year, the only state to lose so much population. So, unfortunately, I think our economy will have trouble for a while yet.
1.21.2008 8:47pm
MarkField (mail):

MLK gave his speech before the Civil RIghts Act of 1964 was passed. The speech was understood as a plea to enact that legislation. As of that date, there was only one understanding of the term "Affirmative Action".


That wasn't DMN's claim. His claim was that MLK never had any understanding other than non-discrimination. Specifically, he said, "When MLK was alive, affirmative action meant the exact opposite of what it does now. It meant non-discrimination, not racial preferences."

Thus, your claim about MLK's understanding in 1963, whether true or not, doesn't answer that question and the EOs DMN cited are entirely irrelevant. The issue is NOT, "what did Johnson or Kennedy believe as expressed in the EOs?", it IS "what did King believe, whether then or later?". Evidence of LBJ's belief of JFK's belief simply isn't relevant to that.

What I did by referring to LBJ's metaphor was show that -- putting aside the law for the moment -- the actual discussion in the 60s was broader than just "non-discrimination". Thus, I've already showed that his original claim is flat wrong. If he or anyone else wants to provide some specific quotes from MLK, he's free to do that. For now, though, his posts haven't supported his claim.
1.21.2008 8:54pm
Mary Katherine Day-Petrano (mail):
JohnAnnArbor, fire up those factories and dig in.

I never advocated for everyone to have the same income; I merely stated those earning high incomes must be subject to a high 91% tax rate on the income they earn/asset accumulations if this Country is to rebuild its infrustructure, no questions asked health care for all Americans, no questions asked admission for everyone to attend an accredited college/university/trade school, safe housing ownership for each and every American, and maintain its military superiority and science/technological edge over the rest of the increasingly hostile planetary overpopulation.

Regarding Michigan, hey, NAFTA, globalization, and the domestic auto makers misjudgment in continuing to churn out gaz hog SUVs shut you boys down.
1.21.2008 9:06pm
Ken Arromdee:
"What do these really have to do with honoring the image of a man?"

Uh, because they're all things he supported and championed? :)


All that shows that the process of creating the holiday was deceitful, and we shouldn't have a holiday for him at all. The supposed reason for creating the holiday was to honor his opposition to racism, not his adherence to left-wing causes. We're better off *without* a holiday used to promote raising taxes and opposing the military. If those things are such an inseparable part of his legacy that it's impossible to honor him without promoting those causes, then his legacy is a horrible one and neither he nor it deserve to be honored.

Having one day a year to oppose racism may do us some good. Having one day a year where left-wing causes can't be questioned will do us a lot of harm. It's like saying that on President's Day we're honoring Lincoln, so we must necessarily honor suspending habeas corpus. Many great people did awful things and had awful ideas. (My favorite example in this context is the guy who Martin Luther King was named for--still honored today for starting the Protestant Reformation, but also a notorious Jew hater.)
1.21.2008 9:07pm
Hoosier:
May Katherine:

Please try to control you anger. Remember what the bumper-sticker says:
"Fight New Age Republicanism, not PEOPLE WITH New Age Republicanism."
1.21.2008 9:49pm
David M. Nieporent (www):
DMN, you need to stop taking bits and pieces of history as though they amount to the whole. The specific EOs you mention hardly constitute the whole understanding of AA in the 60s. Nor do they in any way provide evidence of how MLK understood the term.
Look, if you want to argue that MLK betrayed his own stated principles, that's fine. Not everyone -- in fact, nobody -- is perfectly consistent.

But that doesn't change the fact that in the 1960s, that's what the term AA meant. It wasn't perverted to mean its opposite until later.
1.21.2008 9:58pm
Thoughtful (mail):
MKDP: "corr: "cirtually"= virtually"

Thanks for the correction. Now everything makes perfect sense...
1.21.2008 10:04pm
MarkField (mail):

But that doesn't change the fact that in the 1960s, that's what the term AA meant. It wasn't perverted to mean its opposite until later.


Is this your George Aiken moment?
1.21.2008 10:40pm
p.d.:
It's good that Mary Katherine Day-Petrano's here to cancel out the wacko conservatives that sometimes post on these threads.

At least liberals will understand now how thoughtful conservatives feel when embarrassed by our lesser lights.
1.21.2008 10:48pm
Mary Katherine Day-Petrano (mail):
"At least liberals will understand now how thoughtful conservatives feel when embarrassed by our lesser lights." ----> There you go, calling one of the greatest Republican Presidents, Dwight Eisenhower, a "lesser light." I guess bringing up the roots of the Republican party to its wayward sons flicked your bic.

"May Katherine:

Please try to control you anger. Remember what the bumper-sticker says:
'Fight New Age Republicanism, not PEOPLE WITH New Age Republicanism.'" --->

And apparently flicked your bic also, my old blog-friened Hoosier. Who's "angry?" Certainly not me ... I'm elated I might pick up some good investment bargains at a great price in the very near future, the way prices are adjusting.

Wooo Hooooooo ... Can't wait to pick up a nice horse farm-in-foreclosure on the cheap.

Hoosier, my name is "Mary," by the way, not "May." And my birthday is in April.
1.22.2008 12:41am
Harvey Mosley (mail):
Mary Katherine Day-Petrano:


Hoosier, my name is "Mary," by the way, not "May."


Something about glass houses comes to mind...
1.22.2008 1:02am
c vosti (mail):

thank you for posting the speech.
1.22.2008 10:19am
Mary Katherine Day-Petrano (mail):
"Something about glass houses comes to mind..."

Whatcha talkin about? I don't live in one. I am on a leaky sailboat.
1.22.2008 2:41pm
Whatever:
The VC is a strange place. Like an inkblot test, the comments say more about the state of our more perfect union than it does about MLK and what he thought then or would think now.

Perhaps we can have racial inkblot day on the VC and post video/audio/text from public icons or maybe just post symbols and icons (e.g., the text of the E.R.A., a picture of Clarence Thomas, the Willie Horton ad or Jesse Helms famous political ad, a picture of Bill Clinton, The audio from Ronald Reagans campaign speech in Philadelphia, MS, Data on the number of women, asians, blacks and latinos in top 20 law schools from the past 30 years).
Like a badly designed field study, we could observe and interpret and draw conclusions that are not supported by the facts.
1.22.2008 4:01pm