“Religion poisons everything,” the late Christopher Hitchens used to say. (Whatever else we disagree on, theists and atheists can surely agree that he no longer says that.)
Among the weirdest and most disingenuous performances in recent memory was Mr. Hitchens’s effort, in his bestselling book god is Not Great, to portray the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King (along with the Lutheran anti-Nazi pastor and martyr Dietrich Bonhoeffer) as an unbeliever. (Mr. Hitchens also sought, with sheer brazen chutzpah, to depict Josef Stalin as a religious leader.) With that sort of thing in mind, this article is worth a read on Martin Luther King Day:
There is still very much to do, and it seems to me that many leaders of the Black community have lacked Martin Luther King’s moral courage and, consequently, have not addressed the vast problems facing those for whom Dr. King gave his life.
By sheer chance, I ran across a statistic this morning that makes the problems starkly evident. Young black males — so it says (I’ve not verified it and I don’t know exactly how “young” is defined) — represent 1% of the American population, but commit 27% of America’s murders.
This is, I presume, connected with the well-chronicled collapse of the Black family in America. But there’s nothing intrinsically “Black” about the matter. For many years after the American Civll War, black families were more sturdy than White families. It seems that other factors — almost certainly including misguided government social policies — have intervened in more recent decades. But where are Dr. King’s successors on this pressing issue?