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Maya Angelou Is NOT Happy With Martin Luther King Jr's Memorial Statue!

| Filed under: Etc.

Martin Luther King Jr Maya Angelou Memorial Statue

Martin Luther King Jr has been paraphrased for the sake of space on his memorial statue.

Carved on the north face of the thirty-foot-tall granite statue, the memorial reads "I was a drum major for justice, peace and righteousness."

But that's not exactly what the great man said…

What he really said was:

If you want to say that I was a drum major, say that I was a drum major for justice. Say that I was a drum major for peace. I was a drum major for righteousness. And all of the other shallow things will not matter.

And with the paraphrasing, critics like Maya Angelou are saying it makes him sound like an "arrogant twit."

She passionately continues:

The quote makes Dr. Martin Luther King look like an arrogant twit. He was anything but that. He was far too profound a man for that four-letter word to apply. He had no arrogance at all. He had a humility that comes from deep inside. The ‘if’ clause that is left out is salient. Leaving it out changes the meaning completely. [It] minimizes the man. It makes him seem less than the humanitarian he was. It makes him seem an egotist. He would never have said that of himself. He said ‘you’ might say it.

Although it is less than he deserves, we doubt the people doing it did it intentionally to hurt his memory.

They probably weren't thinking with harm, but they should have been thinking with more consideration.

He was a great public figure who stood for an entire movement in history.

What do U think?

[Image via AP Images.]

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28 comments to “Maya Angelou Is NOT Happy With Martin Luther King Jr's Memorial Statue!”

  1. 1

    She needs to lighten up. The point is clearly made and the original wording is fafr too long. Paraphrasing a lengthy quote does not minimize the man, especially since the bottom line is well conveyed.

  2. 2

    Perhaps they should have used a different quote instead of trying to create a sound bite or just say "He stood for peace, justice and righteousness.

  3. 3

    Quit worshipping the guy. He was NOT a god.
    He was a fallible man. A womanizing adulterous 'minister'.
    Just flesh and blood.
    The Civil Rights people did a very valuable thing, but, they are still trying to cash in…for personal benefit. That's selfhish and sleazy.

  4. 4

    geez. some people are never satisfied. Someone will always have something to say or complain about something.

  5. 5

    He has so many great quotes, and they chose to paraphrase that one, and … call it a quote?

    I was taken aback when I found out about the quote, as well.

    It needs to be changed. 1. he didn't say that. 2. it totally misrepresents him.

    tallguy and obbie dobbie and con man… i'll take maya angelou's opinion over their uneducated ones.

  6. 6

    I'm not happy with it either. Every monument along the mall is dedicated to a US president or war hero, this one should not exist at all. Pandering.

  7. 7

    I am not happy about this either…. the monument was made by chinese slaves….

  8. JET says – reply to this


    The MLK Jr monument was designed & carved by a Communist Chinese artist that can't even speak English. It was carved from Chinese marble and shipped from Communist China to Washington DC. The MLK Jr Memorial Foundation is bankrupt and can't pay the $20M Chinese invoice. China says that if they aren't paid, they are taking the MLK Jr Monument back home to Communist China.
    NOT A SINGLE QUOTE from MLK Jr's "I Have a Dream" speech is carved into the Communist Chinese designed & manufactured monument.

  9. 9

    I thought she wasn't going to be happy about the Washington Monument making it look like he has a big package! LOL

  10. 10

    He like white women and so do I.

  11. 11

    I think that statue is hideous. I cant believe how ugly it is. I also cant believe that they spent So she is not unhappy about the statue. She is unhappy with the inscription, like a bunch of people are. I am just annoyed that they cant find an American to design this memorial. There are no enough talented Americans that they have to go to china to find someone to design it.

  12. 12

    This needs to be revised and the people who made this should be justly compensated in his honor. Integrity needs to come back and take it's place in society and as a part of our moral character.

  13. 13

    Re: JET – Good thing MLK's family already received $800K of taxpayer money for the rights to use MLK's image and quotation.

  14. 14

    Isn't the fact that this man has more streets in the US named after him then anyone else enough? MLK Blvd. , Martin Luther King Blvd, Dr King Blvd, Dr. Martin Luther King Blvd. In every freckin town. Isn't that enough????

  15. 15

    The entire memorial is ass ugly. Surely they could've come up with something better than that.

  16. 16

    What a bunch of Morons! The man deserves better than this! a better monument and more respect for putting his humanity and neck on the line at very great risk to him self and his family. No one here will ever be able to match that! His conviction and ideals for equal rights ultimately caused him his life! Some of the comments here are an embarrassment and you should be ashamed. You all are clueless and its so fucking sad!

  17. JET says – reply to this


    Makes you wonder if Communist China didn't hide a large thermonuclear bomb inside the MLK Jr monument.

  18. oskar says – reply to this


    I understand that black African American went through a lot,,, but its the past and now since we get along let's keep it that way , I'm a minority to and have no problem with no one ,, but if we keep on asking for to much ppl will start hating us…. That statue is nice we get the message , its a historical thing that we all have to learn in school ,,, MLK was a great man and not just African American benefit out of him but also me as a Mexican American benefit of of him… PEACE …….

  19. 19

    Re: oskar – César Chávez is a highly celebrated Latino. His name may not be as famous as MLK's but he certainly brought about significant changes for migrant worker's rights.

  20. Jai says – reply to this


    I agree with her. If space was an issue they should have selected a shorter quote. He was an excellent speaker, there is no shortage of them.

  21. 21

    Lame choice of a quote in the first place; even lamer to paraphrase it. It's like quoting Lincoln as saying "87 years ago" instead of "Four score and seven years ago," or saying the Declaration of Independence proclaims the right to "Life, liberty and happiness." Just.not.accurate. If you're going to quote somebody, quote them. If you're going to paraphrase somebody, make it clear that you're paraphrasing. But don't corrupt their s words and claim that's what came from their mouth.

    And who gives a shit where the memorial was made or the ethnicity of the artist? We're going to use bigoted "reasoning" in judging a memorial honoring somebody who dedicated their life and died in pursuit of abolishing bigotry? **Really?** Oh for fuck's sake. :::eyeroll:::

  22. 22

    I have to say, I agree !

  23. 23

    I agree with Maya. Paraphrasing on a statue… yeah, I don't like it.

  24. 24

    I love how it was made by an Asian, and I love how MLK is lilly WHITE!

  25. 25

    This is the most revolting bullshit i have seen. I am sorry but he in no way needs to have anything named after him or statues. He left RIOTS in is wake and he planned it this way is no better then what is in office now. Let see how many people are going to keep making mistakes until the truth is really told. HE DID NOTHING GOOD!!!

  26. 26

    Another American history JOKE MLK Spells DISASTER

  27. 27

    I think that as long as it has nothing to do with gay rights you wouldn't think there is any intent to harm. One could argue that you are too sensitive to anything said or done to a person who is gay but I guess that would make me a homophobe in your eyes for saying that right?
    If something is close to another person's heart and they chose to respond passionately (like you do when there's a cause close to your heart) it's very one sided to take the stance that maybe they are being too sensitive.
    Think about it.

  28. 28

    One quote isn't going to transform the world's opinion of him, get a grip. Of course they are going to twist a quote to sound more 'grand' or whatever.