Without intending to, civil rights historian David Garrow may have just preserved the legacy of Thomas Jefferson.
In a Standpoint article due to be published Thursday, Garrow reports on the FBI memos regarding Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. that were part of a substantial U.S. National Archives data dump from earlier this year.
Among the revelations from the FBI’s year-long bugging of King’s hotel rooms is that King had sex with more than 40 women, participated in orgies and, most damningly, stood by and laughed as a friend raped a woman.
As of this writing, the average consumer of mainstream news knows none of this. Although all of the major British publications have reported on Garrow’s research, none of America’s major media outlets has.
The problem for the major media is Garrow. A Pulitzer Prize winner and King biographer, he is no one’s idea of a right-wing smear artist. In his 2017 Obama biography, in fact, he critiques the president from the left.
As of this moment at least, Garrow is comfortably at home among the liberal journalistic elite. He has little use for those of us who are not.
Garrow, for instance, cited me by name in his endnotes on this subject of Barack Obama’s poem, “Pop.” Although I was the first to identify “Pop” as Frank Marshall Davis, and Garrow concedes as much, he says in parentheses of me, “someone who is cited with the greatest reluctance.” Ouch!
Unless I miss my guess, Garrow is the one who soon will be feeling the pain. Either through naiveté or courage, he has speared one very scared cow.
Going forward, he will receive more death threats than speaking invitations, and if he is not careful, he may even end up on the Southern Poverty Law Center’s watch list.
Already people are citing his research on King to protect the legacy of those heroes our homegrown Red Guard have marked for eradication, Democratic icons Andrew Jackson and Thomas Jefferson most notably.
The Cultural Revolution came late to America. One wonders, for instance, how many Jefferson-Jackson Day dinners Joe Biden attended without noticing anything amiss. Hundreds surely.
Only in the last few years have Democrats thought to rename their annual shindigs. The fact that Jackson and Jefferson both would be conservative Republicans by today’s standards does not enter into the thinking. Just about everything else does.
Presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg expressed his newfound urge to purge last week in an interview with Hugh Hewitt. For Buttigieg, Jackson is surely toast what with the “genocide” that is said to have occurred on his watch.
“Jefferson’s more problematic,” said Mayor Pete generously. The slavery thing bugs the mayor. Jefferson knew it was wrong, “and yet, he did it.” Buttigieg, one supposes, would have freed his slaves.
“It’s not like we’re blotting him out of the history books, or deleting him from being the Founder Fathers,” Buttigieg continued. “But, you know, naming something after somebody confers a certain amount of honor.”
In the last 50 years more things have been named for King than for any other American, including, alas, many of America’s most dangerous streets. His memory would be better served to have those streets get their old numbers back.
That is not about to happen. For all the imagined power of the #MeToo movement, its leaders will not dare impugn the memory of Martin Luther King. The major media will help prevent such an intersectional dust-up by burying the story and allowing feminists to pretend they do not know.
It is the protectors of America’s heritage who will keep the King story in play if only to use as a bargaining chip.
As to Pete “I trust women to draw the line” Buttigieg, he better hope that future generations have a more merciful take on “genocide” than he does. Say what one will about Jackson, but most of the Cherokees survived the Trail of Tears.