Tuesday, January 22, 2013


Last night I was thinking of the irony of the day celebrating the birth of King and his memorable "I have a dream" speech. His day happened to fall on the same day the country inaugurates a black president for his second term. That irony is obvious. But later in the day we closed up the business early (amid single digit temps) and headed off to the theater for Django Unchained which gets high ratings and proved to be very entertaining. But here it is MLK day and we're watching a movie about slavery written and produced by a white guy, Quentin Tarantino. In the end, Jamie Foxx (Django) kills almost every white person in the film, though not before the n-word is used dozens, maybe hundreds, of times. The last scene is the plantation house being blown up. Normally I would recoil from such violence, but the violence (at least against whites) has at times almost a slapstick element. And the KKK posse struggling to see through their eye holes is hilarious. What is somewhat ironic about this film in light of MLK is that here we are in 2013, and the likes of Spike Lee is damning the film for its racism, and Jamie Foxx is hitting back calling Lee names, and the white writer/director is in the middle of it all. Could MLK in his wildest dreams have imagined what we seemed to shrug off and take for granted---the televised inauguration and then the film?