Saturday, January 14, 2017

It's MARTIN LUTHER KING DAY, goddamn it!

Last night (ironically, the first Friday the 13th of the new year), the mayor of Biloxi put out a tweet that rather specifically did not call Monday's holiday "Martin Luther King Day."
It was a fascinatingly specific error (yes, let's just call it an "error," shall we?), but they left it up overnight, finally deleting it this morning, and a lot of the Twitterverse noticed. My personal favorite response was this.
Let's remember that Biloxi, Mississippi was the site of the infamous "wade-ins" in 1960, to protest the fact that the miles of available beach in Biloxi were "whites only," with only tiny "colored" bits of beach available. (That one didn't end well for the protesters in Biloxi, by the way, although it did bring the city to national attention).

Of course, the whole state has a terrible history in the civil rights annals - they didn't call the movie "Alabama Burning," after all.

And let's add this little detail to that list of Mississippi's record on civil rights:
  1. In 1910, the state passed a law to honor January 19 as Robert E Lee's birthday.

  2. In 1983, Reagan made Martin Luther King's Day a federal holiday, observed on the third Monday in January

  3. In 1987, calling it a "cost-saving measure," the state of Mississippi combined the two holidays, in a move that most people understand was a backhanded insult to King (MLK Day was already a Federal holiday - you want to lose a holiday? Accept that you probably shouldn't have a day honoring somebody who committed treason, and get rid of that one.)
And then, in 2017, the mayor of Biloxi decided that the combined holiday needed a name, since everybody was still referring to it by the name of that Negro. A move which he probably regrets, since he's been trying to walk it back all day.

Remember, as we enter the Trump Era, undercover racists are going to keep trying to do this kind of crap.

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