At first, I thought this was an April Fool’s joke. I’m not really sure if Politico thought it’s latest story about Martin Luther King Jr.’s secret white girlfriend was the best way to commemorate the 50th anniversary of his assassination. I like most African-Americans found MLK’s legacy to be so much more than a secret love affair with anyone for that matter. Further, is it me or are articles like this meant paint “Black love” as something which doesn’t really exist? Or black women as someone black men had to settle for and not someone their husbands truly desired? Stories like these come off as if prominent black men such as MLK or Barack Obama somehow had to settle for black wives simply because they previously had romantic affairs with white women? If a man has chosen to remain married to the same women for decades, fathered children with her, built a life with her, does it really matter what happened before this and with whom?
Most people are able to desire and value an inclusive society without ever being a party to an interracial relationship. The romanticized notion this secret relationship somehow defined MLK the activist is a bit of a reach. If anything defined MLK the activist and the Civil Rights Movement, it would be his life experience as a black man living in the Jim Crow South as well as that of other black citizens. The rest is history.