On MLK's Letter from Birmingham Jail

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Martin Luther King, Jr.  was arrested in Birmingham, Alabama, on Good Friday, April 12, 1963, and while he was in jail, he saw in the newspaper a statement from eight "moderate" clergymen who branded the civil rights protests extremist and "untimely." King drafted a furious rebuttal that became known as the "Letter from Birmingham Jail"—a work that would become a masterpieces of American moral argument and would inspire not just the marchers of Birmingham and Selma, but peaceful insurgents from Tiananmen to Tahrir Squares. Jonathan Rieder discusses the Letter, looking at its timeless message and its crucial position in the history of civil rights. His book Gospel of Freedom: Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Letter from Birmingham Jail and the Struggle That Changed a Nation gives us a new perspective on the Letter and the man who wrote it.


Jonathan Rieder

Comments [6]

adrienne from UWS

Yikes John, It's just my opinion, I am not idiotic...chill out

Aug. 29 2013 10:02 AM

@adrienne from UWS…. Professor Rieder is Jewish himself and he did not make the entire Jewish community sound racist, but rather he was discussing Rev. King’s disappointment with the entire “white moderate” community for their insistence that African Americans wait longer to achieve their Civil Rights….what is disappointing is your inability to actually listen to the interview with out jumping to idiotic conclusions.

Aug. 28 2013 12:57 PM
adrienne from UWS

This guy really misses the strong Jewish Support in the movement, not just from individuals but from entire organizations, uniquely so...I don't know why he dose not point that out instead he makes the Jewish Community sound so racist. Like the one rabbi from the south. He seems really uniformed to me, what a shame.

Aug. 28 2013 12:44 PM
Oscar from NY

Mr King was a Capricorn so he has the power of speech because capricorns is half goat half siren, the goat signifies paganism "pentagram, devil, baphomet" the siren part signifies the sea "water,fish," sirens use to sing beautiful notes to attract Ulysses and other warriors some of these warriors use to put wax on their ears so can't listen, Jesus was made into this sign also December 25.

Aug. 28 2013 12:40 PM

Lenny -

Thanks for an interview that is interesting and informative and not the stuff being served up elsewhere.

Aug. 28 2013 12:25 PM

Use of the historical present tense is pretentious and confusing, even more so when the speaker alternates between the two.

Aug. 28 2013 12:16 PM

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