A parade to commemorate the life and work of civil rights leader Martin Luther King will begin at 2 p.m. Monday and move from NW 7th to NW 9th Streets and then to Broadway Avenue and Bricktown in Oklahoma City.
A program before the parade will begin at 12:15 p.m. Monday at St. John’s Episcopal Cathedral at NW 7th Street and Robinson Avenue. The program will feature speakers honoring King and his famous “I Have A Dream” speech.
Here’s a list of other activities today and Monday honoring King.
Those Poor Oklahoma Conservatives
Let’s all shed some tears for those poor right-wingers who think they’re getting a bad deal in the discussion about incendiary and violent political rhetoric that has emerged after the recent Tucson mass shooting that killed six people and left U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords critically injured.
Leading the crying locally is The Oklahoman editorial page, which argues that there has been “no restraint” (“Scissortales . . ., ” Jan. 15, 2011) in the speculation over the Tucson shooter’s motives in the media, a “restraint that was so evident after the 2009 Fort Hood shootings.” Then there’s this from the most conservative newspaper in the country:
The preachy call for restraint then is typically put aside when a mass murderer can be linked, however flimsily, to Christianity or conservatism.
Oh, those poor poor Christians and conservatives. Gosh, everyone’s against them, especially in Oklahoma.
The problem here is two-fold. First, there’s the false comparison between the Foot Hood shootings and the Tucson shootings. The shootings at Food Hood, to state the obvious, happened at a military base, which had a security apparatus that obviously didn’t exist at the Tucson supermarket where Giffords was shot. Also, the military apparently failed to appropriately vet the accused shooter in the Fort Hood shootings, Maj. Nidal Hasan. This was well discussed in the media at the time and Hasan’s religious views were a main issue in the debate.
Second, it’s simply a lie that the media didn’t tie Hasan to “radical Islamic rhetoric” or that there wasn’t a cry for stricter gun control laws after the shooting.
Glenn Beck, the Fox News pundit, said this after the Fort Hood shootings:
Has anybody over at the White House labeled Nidal Malik Hasan, you know, the terrorist,… an extremist?
Let me tell you this, if you don’t fight on the battlefield of ideas, with your mouth, with your mind… there will be another battlefield. It will be fought with guns… I know you see what is being created. I know you see that we are being led into an American cemetery. Society cannot survive like this. You cannot have, ‘This one is an extremist and we label them – for speaking out – and, ‘This one is not an extremist who is actually killing people.’
Here’s Washington Post columnist Charles Krauthammer spinning a “media critique” shortly after the Fort Hood shootings.
What a surprise — that someone who shouts “Allahu Akbar” (the “God is great” jihadist battle cry) as he is shooting up a room of American soldiers might have Islamist motives. It certainly was a surprise to the mainstream media, which spent the weekend after the Fort Hood massacre playing down Nidal Hasan’s religious beliefs.
It’s just a lie to argue that right-wing media didn’t use Hasan’s religious beliefs to fuel more anti-Islamic sentiment in the country. That it did it by supposedly critiquing the media doesn’t make it any different. The trope of the poor, media-wounded right-wing has become more than just laughable. It’s now an ingrained absurdity in our political culture.
Also, after the Fort Hood shootings, the president of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, issued a statement that included this:
America has seen an epidemic of horrific gun violence at churches and synagogues, workplaces, health clubs, high schools, universities, police stations and now Army bases. This latest tragedy, at a heavily fortified army base, ought to convince more Americans to reject the argument that the solution to gun violence is to arm more people with more guns in more places. Enough is enough.
The Oklahoman editorial page continues to use false logic in debating important cultural and political arguments. It also uses lies and fictional grievances to advance a right-wing agenda that includes carefully employing the language of weaponry and violence-Sarah Palin’s infamous crosshairs map that targeted Giffords’ district, for example-to inflame political agitation.