Linda Sarsour: Context is Everything Except When I Decide It Isn’t


Today is Martin Luther King Jr Day in the US, and as usual, many haters are trying to co-opt his legacy towards the so-called palestinian cause.

When it comes to haters, Linda Sarsour is savvier than most. She has not come out to suggest he was pro-palestinian (knowing full well he wasn’t), but (I believe) has tried to preemptively attack those who claim he was pro-Israel.

Every year, I find it necessary to remind us of the true and authentic Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. He is not a historical figure left for you to mold in the way that suits your own personal views.

He was a flawed leader who committed himself to uplifting Black People and alleviate suffering of the poor. He died with few friends. He was ostracized and marginalized when he decided to unequivocally stand up against the war in Vietnam, decry capitalism and militarism. He criticized white moderates and pointed out that they were often the obstacles to transformative change and progress because they were more committed to order than justice.

He was labeled an extremist, a communist, the organizations he organized with were blacklisted by the US Government. Then FBI Director J Edgar Hoover called him the “most dangerous Negro in America,” he wrote us a letter from the Birmingham Jail. White organizations and donors stripped him of funding when they didn’t approve of his message and evolution in understanding the roots of oppression. When he ventured out of the box they saw fit for him – they jumped ship leaving the civil rights movement to struggle – and STILL THEY SURVIVED.

Ahistorical posts about MLK serve to rewrite history in a way that hurts and decontextualizes the movements we are a part of today. It’s a new day but the same old cycle of whitewashing history.

I honor the imperfect, anti-war, anti-racist, anti-capitalist, Black Christian Baptist Minister, radical revolutionary Dr. King. The Dr. King that 66% of Americans at the time DID NOT agree with. I honor a man who was murdered at the hands of white supremacy that is flourishing today – 53 years after his assassination.

That’s my Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Hope he’s yours.


Sarsour’s below response to a commenter reinforces the idea that when she writes “Ahistorical posts about MLK serve to rewrite history in a way that hurts and decontextualizes the movements we are a part of today,” she has in mind those that show he was pro-Israel.

@saraabourashed that’s out of context & overall an inaccurate depiction of MLK. Sent you some articles.

But make no mistake about it. MLK was pro-Israel. In whichever context you want to look at it. Heck even antisemites and haters like Syrian Girl and Richard Silverstein understand this.

But it is interesting Sarsour speaks about taking things out of context.

Sarsour is suggesting that Israel is anti-human rights. But context is everything.

Israel’s education minister is banning groups that call Israel an “apartheid state” from lecturing at schools — a move that targets one of the country’s leading human rights groups after it began describing both Israel and its control of the Palestinian territories as a single “apartheid” system.

The explosive term, long seen as taboo and mostly used by the country’s harshest critics, is vehemently rejected by Israel’s leaders and many ordinary Israelis.

Education Minister Yoav Galant tweeted late on Sunday that he had instructed the ministry’s director general to “prevent the entry of organizations calling Israel ‘an apartheid state’ or demeaning Israeli soldiers from lecturing at schools.”

Once again, Sarsour’s hypocrisy knows no bounds.

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