Vitamin K: How an episode of Boondocks on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. foretold how much we lost our moral fiber | Think Piece

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What happened? What happened to our people Huey?

If Martin Luther King were alive today, what would he say?

The death of Winnie Mandela; heroine of the anti-apartheid struggle and ‘mother’ of the newly freed South Africa. The fatal shooting by Sacramento, California police of 22 year-old Stephen Clark, an indigenous Black man gunned downed in his grandmother’s backyard and armed…with only a cellphone.

Lastly, but not least, New York rapper Fabolous, was charged with one count of aggravated assault and one count of making terroristic threats against his wife Emily Bustamante in New Jersey.

What do these events have in common? All three events either occurred or occupied the news cycle this week; which 50 years ago, iconic human rights leader, Dr, Martin Luther King, Jr, was assassinated on a balcony outside of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee – April 4th, 1968.

Back in 2006, the thought-provoking and controversial animated series on Cartoon Network, The Boondocks, satirized the assassination of Dr. King in an episode (“Return of the King”) that has the famed Civil Rights activist waking up from a 30-year coma and lamenting the sad state of affairs…of Black people.

At one point in the episode when King asks the main character Huey, “What happened to our people?”

Huey responds, “I think everyone was waiting for Martin Luther King to come back.”

King says, “The Martin Luther King they’re waiting for Huey is gone forever.”

As I currently look at advertisements on public transportation featuring mumble rappers and a sexualized, shock “femcee,” it is hard to argue how prophetic and still timely this episode was…and is. Much of the nutrition, the fuel of righteous, moral indignation against oppression, tyranny and the undervaluation of indigenous Black life has been depleted. An undervaluation, that is just as equally oppressive – internally – as it is, externally by parasitic forces/systems and its agents.

Ark Republic wants to know what you think about the episode. Shameless? Or, priceless?

The struggle…continues?

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Fahiym Abdu-Wasi is a long time journalist and former editor for The Source. Now an academic advisor at NYU, he covers hip-hop and masculinity

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