The FBI’s Secret Civil Rights Files, Part 2
Spencer J. Quinn
The Truth About Martin Luther King, Jr.
Part 2 of 2. Part 1 here.
Earlier this month President Trump instructed the National Archives to release hundreds of previously-sealed documents which pertained to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Included among these documents were two FBI files which, curiously enough, have little to do with the Kennedy assassination but could have great bearing on the current struggles of the Dissident Right. In Part 1 of this series, we covered the May 1967 FBI report entitled “Racial Violence Potential in the United States This Summer.”
Now I will discuss the second document, “Martin Luther King, Jr., an Analysis,” which was dated March 12, 1968, just three weeks before King’s assassination.
It always hurts to see one’s icons destroyed. Those icons are really what link a person to a greater humanity and whatever lies beyond it. It’s as if through an icon a person can channel an identity which signifies something much greater than himself. Icons can pull people into their orbits and inspire love and awe. People derive meaning and self-worth through them. Icons can also compete. Different groups may share an icon, or their incompatible icons may prevent them from coexisting. But in all cases, serious epigones prostrate themselves before their icons. It’s sort of like kissing the ring of a mafia boss. It’s done for protection. If you’re going to get to me, first you have to get through him.
In releasing the FBI’s 20-page analysis of Martin Luther King, President Trump recently took a serious swing at one of the Left’s most precious icons. The information in it is quite damning, and it hits King’s legacy from several directions. If people on the Right take up where Trump left off by internalizing the document and by going on the offensive with it against the Left, King’s potency as an icon will be greatly reduced. It sort of reminds me of how Sean Hannity would often mention Chappaquiddick whenever the topic of Ted Kennedy came up on his show. It was his way of shaming his opponents for supporting an icon that was not only all too human, but at times even less than that.
For students of the Civil Rights Movement, the FBI’s analysis may not reveal very much new information about King (although there is some). King’s heyday is still well within living memory, and contemporaneous knowledge and rumor surrounding the man has had a way of trickling up to the present day, especially within conservative and rightist circles. The major knocks against him are that he plagiarized his doctoral thesis in systematic theology at Boston University in the mid-1950s, that he frequently engaged in extramarital sex, and that he was closely linked to the Communist Party, USA (CPUSA). The FBI file addresses these last two issues, in some cases down to niggling detail, and leads one to conclude that Martin Luther King was little more than a sex addict and a shill for the Communist Party.
The sexual indiscretions harm King’s legacy, of course, but in the near-fifty years since his death, King’s friends and admirers have successfully whitewashed a good deal of it. Have a look at this Wikipedia article, which I believe sticks to the leftist party line on King. In the section entitled “Adultery,” the article’s authors and their various sources refer blandly to King’s “affairs,” “liaisons,” “infidelities,” and (best of all) “incidental couplings.” King colleague and eventual successor at the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), Ralph Abernathy wrote of King’s “weakness for women,” and claimed he had a “difficult time with temptation.” Another writer describes King’s promiscuity as “a form of anxiety reduction” which caused him a great deal of “painful and at times overwhelming guilt.”
The whitewashing of King’s prodigious sexual appetites goes on to this day. For example, CNN called the document’s frank disclosures of King’s conduct as “insinuations and assertions about King’s personal life” and describes King’s behavior as “extramarital affairs and other sexual improprieties.” CNN then quotes the current director of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Research and Education Institute who accuses the authors of the document (or perhaps Trump himself) of attempting to “damage Martin Luther King’s reputation.”
So, basically, in the eyes of the Left, Martin Luther King, Jr. is a victim who is as innocent as he could possibly be and still be guilty. Given the Left’s overall tolerance of sexual promiscuity and deviancy, this means he’s not really guilty at all. At least not until the National Archives releases the FBI surveillance tapes and transcripts to the public in 2027.
So what did the FBI disclose? In the report’s final section, entitled “King’s Personal Conduct,” it states that in February 1968, while running a “workshop” on urban leadership in Miami, King hired prostitutes with funds from the Ford Foundation. He then engaged in binge drinking and group sex acts which the FBI describes as “deviating from the normal.” The FBI also relates how King participated in another “drunken sex orgy” in Washington, DC back in 1964. The sex acts were both “natural and unnatural” according to the FBI and were performed “for the entertainment of onlookers.”
In the 1960s, this was the pattern for King, who, according to the FBI, “has continued to carry on his sexual aberrations secretly while holding himself out to public view as a moral leader of religious conviction.”
As for bombshells in the sexual improprieties department, the file reveals that King may have sired a baby girl out of wedlock with the wife of a “prominent Negro dentist in Los Angeles.” He also reportedly had sexual relations with folk singer Joan Baez.
Note how King’s defenders refer to all this as King’s “personal life” or, when forced to, admit his excesses only in the most anodyne terms, such as “affairs.” No, King didn’t just have “affairs.” He had sex parties. Furthermore, the FBI analysis did not infringe upon King’s “personal life” because what King did wasn’t merely personal. What one does in the bedroom with one’s spouse or significant other is “personal.” I’ll even grant that what one does during a discreet tryst in a hotel room can also be construed as “personal.” Drunken orgies, on the other hand, especially those involving prostitutes and paid for by grant money, cannot possibly be considered “personal.” No, such behavior is quite public — not to mention hypocritical — when engaged in by a public figure who dedicates his life to holding his nation up to unrealistically high moral standards.
Even more inflammatory about the FBI report — although reported on less since its release — is its assertion that King often acted at the behest of his communist puppet masters. Where the two pages covering King’s sexual misconduct challenge his high moral standing as a Civil Rights Era icon, the ten or so pages covering his communist activities bluntly call into question his intellectual capacities as a leader of men. Unsurprisingly, the name Stanley Levison appears many times in the document. Levison was a Jewish attorney and “shrewd, dedicated communist” who acted for many years as King’s “Assistant Chief” and who also served as a clandestine fund-raiser for the CPUSA. The FBI claims that King often looked to Levison for instruction and approval before acting, and that Levison used King to further the communist agenda (which by the 1960s included linking the so-called “Negro people’s freedom movement” with anti-Vietnam War effort).
Levison gravitated to Martin Luther King, Jr. in 1956. He has been as dedicated in his support of King as he has been in advancing communist goals. He has actively involved himself in fund-raising drives for King, served as his legal counsel in certain matters, suggested speech material for him, discussed with King demonstrations in which King was involved, guided him in regard to acceptance or rejection of various public appearances and speaking commitments, and helped him with matters related to articles and books King has prepared.
According to the FBI, Levison also ghostwrote a chapter in King’s book Where Do We Go From Here: Chaos or Community?. Most damning, however, is the FBI’s assertion that Levison considered King a “slow thinker” and insisted that he never issue statements without first seeking approval from him (Levison) or his other advisors. Levison also served as the SCLC’s assistant treasurer in the early 1960s.
Also according to the FBI, Levison and other sources within the CPUSA saw King as a committed Marxist-Leninist who for obvious reasons had to keep this fact under wraps. But his ties to communism, the FBI shows, were quite clear. One of King’s closest advisors, Clarence Jones, married the communist daughter of publisher William H. Norton. Other communist colleagues of King included Hunter Pitts O’Dell, Lawrence Reddick, Bayard Rustin, Cordy Vivian, Randolph Blackwell, and Harry Wachtel.
Wachtel and Rustin in particular acted as behind-the-scenes players who attempted to leverage King’s status as a Nobel Peace Prize winner in order to “inject King into the Vietnam issue” and ultimately cede victory the Vietcong. But King, who apparently knew little about international politics, was hardly suited for the job. When a newspaper asked him twelve questions on his position on Vietnam, King forwarded the questions to Levison. Further, after the bombing of North Vietnam in 1966, the media was pressuring King for a response. He had to check with Levison and Rustin before giving one. As the FBI document shows, these were no isolated incidents. Martin Luther King, Jr. frequently sought counsel and instruction from his advisors before acting, especially his Jewish ones, Wachtel and Levison. Also, in spite of denying any communist ties, his positions and statements rarely wavered far from the official platform of the CPUSA.
The fact that two of King’s most prominent advisors were Jews should come as a surprise to no one. Benjamin Ginsburg, in his indispensible work The Fatal Embrace shows exactly how Jewed-up the Civil Rights Movement really was:
Jewish organizations also worked closely with civil rights groups during the 1960s in their struggles on behalf of voting tights and for the desegregation of public facilities and accommodations. Jewish contributors provided a substantial share of the funding for such civil rights groups as the NAACP and CORE. Jewish attorneys were at the forefront of the legal offensive against the American apartheid system. Stanley Levinson [sic], a longtime official and fund-raiser for the American Jewish Congress, became Martin Luther King’s chief aide and advisor, having previously served as a major fund-raiser for Bayard Rustin. Harry Wachtel was a major legal advisor and fundraiser for the SCLC. Levison and Wachtel were often called King’s twin Jewish lawyers. Jack Greenberg, head of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund was the most important single civil rights lawyer in the United States. Jews comprised a large segment — perhaps one-third of the Whites who participated in civil rights marches and protests in the South during the 1960s.
The information presented in “Martin Luther King, Jr., an Analysis” only supports Ginsburg’s points as well as the conviction that Martin Luther King acted often as a tool for the Communist Party.
There is one relatively minor finding in the FBI report which should be mentioned before concluding. Apparently, on top of being a sex fiend and covert communist, Martin Luther King and his associates at the SCLC were swindling money from the US government. In a short section entitled “A Tax Dodge” the FBI states that
The SCLC set up Foundations to serve as tax exempt organizations that would solicit funds for the SCLC. To this end, the American Foundation on Nonviolence of New York City, and the Southern Christian Leadership Foundation of Chicago, Illinois, were established. As money is needed by the SCLC, Harry Wachtel reportedly funnels the money from the American Foundation on Nonviolence to the SCLC.
I have no idea if this was common knowledge beforehand, but it was certainly a new one for me.
As an icon of the Left, Martin Luther King, Jr. is remembered today in two major ways: as a paragon of the egalitarian ethos championed by current Western elites, and as proof of the moral superiority of the Left over the Right. Using King, the Left can justify violence against its enemies simply by claiming that King’s nonviolent approach has been proven to fail. Any racial disparities in the years following the Civil Rights Movement can be seen as proof of this. The fact that King was assassinated offers proof as well. Because King failed to reach the Promised Land via nonviolence, the only tactic remaining for the Left is, of course, violence. This is essentially why Martin Luther King will never die in a multiracial society: as a weapon he’s too useful.
By mentioning these two FBI reports in public discourse as often as possible, people on the Right now have a handy weapon of their own. And since these reports have the imprimatur of none other than the President of the United States on them, they cannot be ignored. In the past, bringing up compromising information on King could be dismissed as racist sniping or rumor-mongering. Now, it cannot. Now it must be part of the mainstream. Now it must be used to counter the Leftist control of our nation and culture.
For no other reason than because it can.