WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Maya Angelou Takes Issue With MLK Memorial Quote

Play associated audio
The new Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial opened Aug. 22. Already there is controversy over a Dr. King quote that was paraphrased for space.
Elliott Francis
The new Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial opened Aug. 22. Already there is controversy over a Dr. King quote that was paraphrased for space.

Poet and author Maya Angelou is taking issue with a paraphrased quotation by Martin Luther King Jr. etched in the recently opened memorial for Dr. King near the mall.

The paraphrase reads: "I was a drum major for justice, peace and righteousness."

The exact words, taken from a sermon Dr. King delivered in 1968 are: "Yes, if you want to say that I was a drum major, say that I was a drum major for justice. Say that I was a drum major for peace. I was a drum major for righteousness."

Angelou, a consultant on the memorial, says the out of context version sounds egotistical and should be changed.

Planners say they intended to use most of the original quote, but had to change its placement to an area of the sculpture which couldn't accommodate the entire quote.

Ed Jackson Jr., executive architect of the memorial, says although Angelou was part of the committee charged with selecting quotes for the memorial, she did not attend meetings about the inscriptions.

NPR

Nina McLemore's Clothes Are A 'Weapon' Of Powerful Women

Nina McLemore designs clothes for powerful women: Hillary Clinton, Elizabeth Warren, Janet Yellen, Elena Kagan and others. She talks about how fashion can help women stand out in political office.
NPR

After Italy Quakes, Food World Delivers Support To Home Of Famous Pasta Dish

Amatrice was set to host the 50th celebration of pasta all'Amatriciana famously made there, but this week's earthquake devastated the town. NPR's Scott Simon speaks with food blogger Jeremy Cherfas.
NPR

Trump Promises Crackdown On Immigrants At Iowa 'Roast And Ride' Event

At Iowa freshman Sen. Joni Ernst's motorcycle ride and barbecue fundraiser, Trump didn't attend the ride, but addressed participants in a much-needed bid to draw support from influential GOP leaders.
WAMU 88.5

Want To Play Video Games Made In D.C.? Here's Your Chance.

An event called District Arcade brings together 23 locally made video games.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.