Mandeville, LA – Exclusive Transcript – Dr. Alveda King: ” We were all created in the image and likeness of God. People are born into sin because of what happened in the Garden of Eden. My dad, A.D. King, loved Acts 17:26, Martin Luther King, Jr.’s brother who was choked and thrown in a swimming pool in ’69. That’s why I say with gun control, you’re going to do choke control, theft control, knock-you-out control. We have to change human hearts. When dad said Acts 17:26, of one blood God made all people. That fit in with his brother’s message, the beloved community, which they both shared. All of us in the beloved community should be loved equally. Does that mean we agree with everything each other is doing? No. We need to obey the Constitution of the United States. I think people forgot what’s in it.” Check out today’s transcript AND Clip of The Day for the rest….
Begin Mike Church Show Transcript
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Mike: You were with the African-American outreach for pro-life priests, correct?
Alveda King: Yes, I am, Director of African-American Outreach – Priests for Life. I’m a nondenominational Christian. I’m an ordained evangelist. I go around preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ. But for the last ten years, I’ve been with Priests for Life proclaiming the gospel of life. That is so important. Life from conception until natural death, that covers the sick, the elderly, the baby, rape baby victims, all of that. You just want to give people the dignity, the human dignity, because God has actually given us the right to live. We don’t want to interrupt that.
Mike: I must say, Ms. Alveda, you sound remarkably like your uncle.
King: Wow, what a compliment. You mentioned that he was Reverend Martin Luther King.
Mike: I did.
King: He loved the Bible. He loved God very much and serving Jesus Christ. Was he perfect? He was about as perfect as David or Moses or Paul. We know Paul killed Christians. David murdered somebody. They all came back to their father. Moses killed somebody and had a bad temper until he was out in that wilderness with God for a while. My uncle is called the black Moses. He’s just as good as all the Bible heroes in my opinion.
Mike: I asked Father Pavone this earlier and I’ll ask you the same question. Today is the day that we honor Reverend King. I had played at the top of this hour a very rare interview that the Reverend King had granted to Meet the Press in 1966. He was asked a question about the Vietnam War. He said: I’m not only an advocate for Negroes not fighting in the Vietnam War; I’m an advocate for no one fighting in the Vietnam War because it’s an unjust war.
King: It’s an unjust war. He was not against war. People misunderstand that. You can take part of a message and make it into something else. But when a war is unjust, and when the people who are not making those political decisions become a victim in another country, then that is unjust. It’s unfortunate. That’s what he was saying. Man’s inhumanity to man, remember that we’re dealing with people. We teach my little grandchildren now, use your words. Bernice King, his daughter, at the King Center 365 days of nonviolence, use your words instead of weapons and weapons of your words and real weapons like guns and things like that. My uncle was not naïve. He was very intelligent. That was his message at that time.
Mike: I also had mentioned to Father Pavone that when Reverend King was in jail, he wrote from Birmingham not as a doctor. He wrote as a reverend. His letter begins, “My Dear Fellow Clergymen: While confined here in the Birmingham city jail, I came across your recent statement calling my present activities ‘unwise and untimely.’” He writes a response, Alveda. I just want to read with you, since I have you on the phone, the pleasure and honor of having you on the phone, I just want to read the concluding paragraphs because they’re beautiful.
Never before have I written so long a letter. I’m afraid it is much too long to take your precious time. [Mike: What humility to apologize. I’m sorry I made you guys suffer through such a long letter. I love this part.] I can assure you that it would have been much shorter if I had been writing from a comfortable desk, but what else can one do when he is alone in a narrow jail cell, other than write long letters, think long thoughts and pray long prayers?
If I have said anything in this letter that overstates the truth and indicates an unreasonable impatience, I beg you to forgive me. If I have said anything that understates the truth and indicates my having a patience that allows me to settle for anything less than brotherhood, I beg God to forgive me.
I hope this letter finds you strong in the faith. I also hope that circumstances will soon make it possible for me to meet each of you, not as an integrationist or a civil-rights leader but as a fellow clergyman and a Christian brother.
King: Isn’t that amazing?
Mike: It is beautiful.
Let us all hope that the dark clouds of racial prejudice will soon pass away and the deep fog of misunderstanding will be lifted from our fear drenched communities, and in some not too distant tomorrow the radiant stars of love and brotherhood will shine over our great nation with all their scintillating beauty.
Yours for the cause of Peace and Brotherhood, Martin Luther King, Jr.
Mike: Beautiful. Your comments?
King: It is beautiful. Let me say, as you read that and he’s apologizing for it being so long, I have a new open letter out. It’s called “And it all started with an apple!” You can Google it and it’ll come up. It’s over 3000 words. I’m asking people to read it. I’m having to apologize, too. It’s not dealing with skin color as much as other issues like abortion or the sanctity of marriage and things like that. I point out that we all are part of God’s beloved community. We were all created in the image and likeness of God. People are born into sin because of what happened in the Garden of Eden. My dad, A.D. King, loved Acts 17:26, Martin Luther King, Jr.’s brother who was choked and thrown in a swimming pool in ’69. That’s why I say with gun control, you’re going to do choke control, theft control, knock-you-out control. We have to change human hearts. When dad said Acts 17:26, of one blood God made all people. That fit in with his brother’s message, the beloved community, which they both shared. All of us in the beloved community should be loved equally. Does that mean we agree with everything each other is doing? No. We need to obey the Constitution of the United States. I think people forgot what’s in it.
My uncle regarded the sanctity of life. In that letter from Birmingham jail, he said don’t be like the Romans who committed infanticide to their peril. My uncle was pro-life. His daddy was pro-life. His brother, my dad, A.D. was pro-life. I wasn’t always pro-life. I had abortions and things. Then my grandfather finally put a stop to it. I was going to abort one of my other children who’s living and he said: That’s not a lump of flesh. That’s my great grandchild. He told my mother that in 1950 when she was pregnant with me and she was trying to work with the Birth Control League, who later became Planned Parenthood. They were trying to convince her to abort me. He said the same thing. He said: I saw that baby in a dream three years ago, a little girl with bright skin, bright red hair and she’s going to bless the world. I’m here today. My uncle was pro-life. The family, the King Family legacy is pro-life. Read it in my book King Rules, www.kingrulesbook.com. There’s a whole chapter on life with Father Pavone, my good friend, who wrote the afterword in there.
Mike: Does it trouble you, Alveda, that there has been so much licentiousness taken with Reverend King? As you said, he wasn’t perfect. As you correctly pointed out, St. Paul wasn’t perfect either. St. Peter ran from Christ and denied him three times. Is there a greater sin than that? Does it trouble you the license that has been taken with Reverend King’s name? No one will even say Reverend King. They insist it’s doctor. I always insist, no, it’s Reverend who was a doctor.
King: I appreciate your doing that so much. Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. He preached his own eulogy, “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop.” He said don’t talk about the Nobel Peace Prize and all that. Just tell people I tried to help somebody. We honor him today by remembering that he desired to help others, to serve others. At the King Center, it’s a day on, not a day off. Bernice King at the King Center 365 days of nonviolence, human life is sacred. All of that is very important. I’m going to have to leave you. I’m so sorry. It’s a wonderful day but I have to keep moving. It’s just a beautiful, beautiful message of loving each other and respecting life. That’s a very beautiful part of who Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is today. He lived in Heaven, but I believe he’d want you to know that. My daddy is in Heaven with him.
Mike: Dr. Alveda King, this is the niece of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on Martin Luther King Day. She’s also the Director of African-American Outreach – Priests for Life. Alveda, what am I looking for with the apple letter again?
King: “And it all started with an apple!” It’s a little controversial. The whole article is at PriestsForLife.org/AfricanAmerican.
End Mike Church Show Transcript