MLK .. Honored or Slightly Pissed Off ?

WASHINGTON — The centerpiece for the Martin Luther King Jr. memorial on the National Mall has drawn criticism from a federal arts panel, which says the proposed statue looks “confrontational” and resembles the head of a socialist state more than a civil rights leader.

Models of the 28-foot tall statue depict King emerging from a chunk of granite, his arms folded in front of his chest, his legs firmly rooted, an intense gaze on his face.

But the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts, which reviews the design of projects in the capital area, said the design should be reworked to reflect a more sympathetic rendering of King.  Full Story .

The Beef …

Is the rendering of MLK too confrontational ?  And is it an injustice that an African American, or at least an American, wasn’t selected to be the sculptor ?  

No and no, in my opinion.   

The hiring of Chinese sculptor Lei Yixon seems like a reasonable choice if he’s one of the best at his craft.  The fact that he’s not an American is exactly the “diversity” that America was built on.  And If I’m not mistaken, Dr. King supported a nation endearing to all races and cultures, not just African-American cultures.  The panel desires a more sympathetic rendering of King,  describing it as an “unfortunate and inappropriate” expression of his legacy.  “His arms folded in front of his chest, his legs firmly rooted, an intense gaze on his face”.  So he’s slightly pissed off.  Didn’t he have the right to be ?

I suspect that King would be honored by the Asian’s rendering, and humbled to have his 20 foot likeness displayed so prominately in the Washington Mall with the likes of Linoln and Jefferson.  If nothing else, he certainly would have approved of being chiseled out of the granite boulder called “The Stone of Hope”. 



4 comments so far

  1. Carrie on

    “…genre of political sculpture that has recently been pulled down in other countries.” Hmmm…are they referring to the statue of Saddam Hussein, perhaps? This is ridiculous. What expression are you supposed to have on your face if you were a leader of a movement that big and fought tirelessly against oppression for an entire race? He was intense and the sculpture of his likeness should reflect that. Maybe they should ask his children what they think about it. Let them make the ultimate decision.

  2. Cecil Jones on

    Stevo, the topic you are selecting make this way too easy. This Dr. Martin Luther King Jr looks like a Dr. alright. He looks like Dr. Evil giving himself a megalomanic hug. Put the pinky to his mouth and I think the artist should pay royalties. It’s a sad way for us to pay our respects? What’s next, “A carbonite statute of Jaba the King with Princess Laia and her broken chains” featuring the caption “Free at Last?” This is Dr. King and he deserves respect… from us all.

  3. Stevo on

    Just throwing you some slow hanging curve balls Cecil … when are you going to hit one into the rafters ? :)

    Now that you mention it, if you throw on some hair, glasses, and a cheesy mustache.. that statue looks just like Lei Yixon in a granite suit … those communist imperialist sculptors fool me every time.

  4. Ken Letizia on

    This is a good depiction of what, the majority of, Black America has become. The majority of Black America, is angry, lazy, and blames everyone for their problems. What cant be stolen, will be taken at gun point. What cant be smoked will be drank. Its sad, but the last thing we need is another reminder of the reverse segregation in America. There is the NAACP, United Negro College Fund, And BET. What would happen if we had, the United Caucasian College Fund, or the We Support White Peoples Rights Group, or WET? LA would be burned to the ground in the riots. There are all black schools, TV stations, colleges and funds, and this is OK. No, it isn’t. They claim to want equality and respect, but they don’t give it in return. Even Im part black and my black friends, all tell me how whitey holds them back. But when we talk about work, they are on welfare, food stamps, general assistance, and smoking a blunt. By all means, let the statue stand, its accurate as to the, Majority of, the Black American attitude today.

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