Newsweek tweeted, then quickly deleted an controversial image of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in an open casket on Monday. The post included a photo of the civil rights leader in his casket and the caption stated “Has anybody here seen my old friend Martin?” Newsweek was called out for the insensitive photo by the daughter of the late civil rights leader, Bernice King.
Respect The King:
January is not only the month where we begin a new year, but it is also the month that the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was born in. Every 3rd Monday of January is designated as the official day where we acknowledge and celebrate the phenomenal leader’s birthday. Dr. Martin Luther King was officially born on January 15th 1929.
Newsweek began their celebration of Dr. King by tweeting a photo of him in his casket along with the caption, “Has anybody here seen my old friend Martin?”. The caption is a quote from the Dick Holler song, Abraham, Martin and John. Holler wrote the song in 1968 to remember the lives of Abraham Lincoln, MLK, former President John F. Kennedy and his brother Robert Kennedy. All of those leaders were assassinated while promoting change in America.
After the picture was shared, many people were baffled as to why Newsweek chose to share such a tasteless photo of King. King was loved by many and a reminder of his death was hurtful to see. Not only did it offend many Twitter users but it also offended his daughter, Bernice King. Newsweek realized their error and deleted the image while offering an apology.
Earlier this afternoon we published an opinion piece with an insensitive image of Martin Luther King Jr. We sincerely apologize to the King family for this egregious error, the news outlet said on Twitter.
Martin Luther King Jr.’s daughter, Bernice A. King, lashed out at Newsweek for sharing an image of her father in an open casket on Twitter on Jan. 1, 2018.King’s daughter, Bernice King, shared her outrage with the publication by going live on social media.
Today I saw where Newsweek published this insensitive image of my father,” she said. We must never forget that Dr. King was a husband and was a father so we deal all the time just with continuing to manage our father and the great work that he’s done…so it was difficult,” she said of seeing the image. I want to thank Newsweek for immediately responding and removing the image and for giving an apology. Apology accepted, she said. My mother continued this great work of my father’s legacy so in some respects we have not been able to bury him. Keep in mind that there is a living breathing family, three offspring, a sister, a host of nieces and nephews, so as people prepare to post images, try to be careful about the images around him in the casket. Those are difficult, those are very challenging for us to have to see.
Of all the photos that could have been chosen, why Newsweek chose to publish a casket photo of Dr. King is baffling. The pictures of him marching, or delivering one of his memorable speeches, or being with his children weren’t good enough? It was just plain disrespectful and someone should be fired.
What are your thoughts?