<National Report>Washington, DC– In a speech delivered at an exclusive White House luncheon honoring the late Martin Luther King, President Barack Obama shocked dignitaries, civil rights figures and even members of King’s family, by suggesting not only that ‘folks need to get on down the road and get over Martin Luther King’, but that he himself was now the face of civil rights.
“Doctor King was martyred a long time ago, before many of us were even born. After 50 years folks are ready for a change, new blood and a new hero to look up to. Someone they can really follow. I believe I am that man. It’s true that doctor King did a whole lot of heavy lifting when it came to advancing the cause and addressing the grievances of colored folks, and for that, we are truly grateful, but, to be realistic, he never never did the real work of holding public office, never signed a bill expanding food stamps, increasing welfare and unemployment payments in his life, or got funding to build a single basketball court, all things modern black families are vitally interested in today.
Oh, it’s true that he gave some wonderful speeches, and black folks will be forever in his debt for the inspiration he gave them, but on a practical level, the young people of today should consider raising their sites to include those of us who have actually accomplished something besides, public speaking and getting arrested. I encourage those in attendance and those of you who cannot be here today, to listen to my words and let them challenge you to discover and embrace the leadership of today rather the leadership of yesterday. Let Marin rest in peace.” The President is said to have raised a glass of champagne at the conclusion of his remarks while a stunned audience sat in silence.
White House officials questioned about the President’s comments, following the luncheon, stated only that the remarks were not from the prepared set of notes, but spontaneous ‘from the heart’ thoughts Obama had decided to add at the last minute. One official did suggest that the President had perhaps had a few too many glass of ‘the bubbly’, but stated that was only conjecture.