GOOD

Martin Luther King Jr. Cheated on His Wife and Got Drunk; Big Deal

A writer asks us to stop ignoring the fact that the civil rights leader was a human being.


For years now the white power organization Stormfront has parked an anti-Martin Luther King Jr. website at MartinLutherKing.org, the hope being, presumably, that people innocuously searching for information about the civil rights leader will be shocked upon discovering that King drank alcohol and had extramarital affairs. Today, hopefully, the purveyors of that website may think about taking it down.

That's because in today's Washington Post, on the 43rd anniversary of King's assassination, writer Hampton Sides makes the very important, oft-overlooked point that a man's flaws don't necessarily outweigh their contributions to the world. After noting that one of King's mistresses had spent the night with King the evening before he was killed, Sides writes, "King was a human being: flawed, vulnerable, uncertain about the future, subject to appetites and buffeted by the extraordinary stresses of his position. His civil rights cause was holy, but he was a sinner."


This in an important lesson that should probably applied to all of our national heroes: A person needn't be perfect to be great. Thomas Jefferson owned slaves. John F. Kennedy had multiple affairs, and his brother, Ted, got off scot-free for wrecking his car and killing a woman. Yet all three accomplished major things in their lifetimes, things whose legacies positively impact us to this day.

Beyond that, it seems self-defeating to want our heroes to be perfect, because we aren't perfect ourselves. As Sides says, "By calling our heroes superhuman we also let ourselves off the hook: Why do the hard work of bettering the world if that’s something only saints do?"

Articles


September 20th marks the beginning of a pivotal push for the future of our planet. The Global Climate Strike will set the stage for the United Nations Climate Action Summit, where more than 60 nations are expected to build upon their commitment to 2015's Paris Agreement for combating climate change.

Millions of people are expected to take part in an estimated 4,000 events across 130 countries.

Keep Reading Show less
The Planet
via Apple

When the iPhone 11 debuted on September 10, it was met with less enthusiasm than the usual iPhone release. A lot of techies are holding off purchasing the latest gadget until Apple releases a phone with 5G technology.

Major US phone carriers have yet to build out the infrastructure necessary to provide a consistent 5G experience, so Apple didn't feel it necessary to integrate the technology into its latest iPhone.

A dramatic new feature on the iPhone 11 Pro is its three camera lenses. The three lenses give users the the original wide, plus ultrawide and telephoto options.

Keep Reading Show less
Health
via I love butter / Flickr

We often dismiss our dreams as nonsensical dispatches from the mind while we're deep asleep. But recent research proves that our dreams can definitely affect our waking lives.

People often dream about their significant others and studies show it actually affects how we behave towads them the next day.

"A lot of people don't pay attention to their dreams and are unaware of the impact they have on their state of mind," said Dylan Selterman, psychology lecturer at the University of Maryland, says according to The Huffington Post. "Now we have evidence that there is this association."

Keep Reading Show less
Health
Photo by Thomas Kelley on Unsplash

It's fun to go to a party, talk to strangers, and try to guess where they're from just by their accents and use of language. It's called 'soda' on the East Coast and 'pop' in the Midwest, right? Well, it looks like a new study has been able to determine where a Humpback whale has been and who he's been hanging out with during his awesome travels just from his song.

Keep Reading Show less
Science

There is no shortage of proposals from the, um, what's the word for it… huge, group of Democratic presidential candidates this year. But one may stand out from the pack as being not just bold but also necessary; during a CNN town hall about climate change Andrew Yang proposed a "green amendment" to the constitution.

Keep Reading Show less
test