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Controversy With New MLK Memorial

So this week was the first week for the brand new Martin Luther King Jr. memorial in Washington DC.  This is a great moment for his family and everything he fought for, but some are finding an issue with the statue.

Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Our country has come so far since Martin Luther King Jr. made his famous “I Have a Dream” speech.  We have our first African American President in Barack Obama and now there is a memorial to the famous civil right leader in our nations capital.  What a great thing to happen.

You would expect some people to have issue with the memorial, but would you expect it to be Maya Angelou?  Yahoo reports that she is the one that is making a big stink over a quote that is on the statue.  That quote reads:

I was a drum major for justice, peace and righteousness

Angelou is saying that it makes the famed civil rights leader look arrogant.  The quote itself was taken from a speech that King made shortly before his death.  Unfortunately it is a shortened version of the quote which actually reads:

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.

-Martin Luther King Jr

It comes from a sermon King did imagining what his own eulogy would sound like.  Angelou was on a committee to select quotes to be put on the statue, but committee members say that she did not attend the meetings.  They also said they selected the whole quote to go on the statue, not the shortened version.

Sounds like someone tried to cut some corners, and is now caught with their hand in the cookie jar.  This mess will have to be cleaned up, or the memorial will seem like a joke.

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