Paul Wilson: Breaking News – Double Homicide at 13th and…MLK?

william_shakespeareBill Shakespeare – one of Harley’s cousins – penned a rather famous line in Romeo and Juliet

It was about Romeo’s linage – the house of Montague – and was meant to express that a name means nothing, changes nothing;

“What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.”

While true for a rose, Charles E. Coulter, a former Star Opinion Page Editor, in an editorial that ran yesterday, said that renaming Troost after Martin Luther King would make it seem less like the racial and crime dividing line that it now is and would essentially make us co-equal with the other great cities of our nation who already have an MLK Blvd.

I found the piece so inane I called Star editorial page VP Miriam Pepper to see if I could submit an opposing point of view. Pepper told me the newspaper “doesn’t do point/counter point” and my only alternative was to submit a Letter to the Editor, limited to 200 words.

That’s funny.

I thought that the Star specialized in giving both sides of a story, but here we have Coulter, a black dude and former employee with an inside track to Pepper and the Star with a PRO Troost/MLK name change piece. He gets three headlines, a pic and 400+ words. While lowly Paul Wilson, internationally known scribe and white guy with an opposing point of view, has to take his chances by submitting a Letter to the Editor with a 200 word limit.


GeorgeClintonSmallI can’t even introduce myself and the topic in 200 words, so in two words borrowed from that great African American philosopher, George Clinton, I say, “Funk Dat!”  I’ll take it up with the KCC readership.

Dr. King was shot April 4th, 1968, on the balcony at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, as his mistress was hiding in his room. Yes, I said it, King had several mistresses. But unlike our current day MLK imitators turned race baiters, Rev Jesse and Rev Al, Reverend King actually had a church and preached out of it.

And to be fair, while not lily white in his philandering, King was no match for the now infamous house of Camelot and JFK.

chris-rockRegardless of his personal failings, King was a giant of the civil rights movement, but naming a street after him?

Comic Chris Rock isn’t a huge fan of MLK named streets, stating in his act; “If a friend calls you on the telephone and says they’re lost on Martin Luther King Boulevard and they want to know what they should do, the best response is ‘Run!’ ”

Nearly 800 US cities have streets named after MLK, Georgia ranking highest with over 100 in their State alone. They range from Akron to Austin, Cleveland to Camden, Dover to Dallas, Ithaca to Indy and Benton Harbor to Boston (although Boston’s MLK is only .6 miles long).

Yet for some reason or other the idea struck Coulter afresh.

“On a recent road trip with family members to the South, I was struck by the number of communities that had dedicated streets, boulevards and avenues to Dr. King. I was again reminded how Kansas City had failed to step up.”

Failed to step up?

“Tulsa, Okla., the city where I was born and grew up, renamed North Cincinnati Avenue last Fall in honor of Dr. King. This was no small feat: The name change affected more than 50 blocks of residences and businesses.”

Ah yes, it does affect businesses, Charles. It affects the cost for street signs, stationary and letterhead changes, invoices, packing slips and anything associated with the business that has its address on it. Just the kind of superfluous expense struggling mom and pops need in today’s economy.

Regardless, Coulter contends, “The advantages to the city would vastly outweigh the few disadvantages.”

“But more valuable reasons exist for adding a Martin Luther King Boulevard to Kansas City’s landscape,” Coulter continues. “If done right, it would again demonstrate this city’s desire to move past its segregated past and break down old barriers. If done right, it could be a powerful symbolic gesture.”

A rose by any other name?

“But might progress along one of Kansas City’s major north-south thoroughfares have a better chance if the street were named for a champion of peace, justice and racial harmony?”

Miriam Pepper_125In a word, Charles, NO.

Why not just change the name of Troost to Gold Grilled Utopia? Let’s see if that makes an even bigger difference.

Most any town you go to, MLK marks the dividing line in the city, just as Troost does today. Martin Luther King attempted to unify the races, he wanted a man measured by the content of his character, not the color of his skin. So why take our current East-West dividing line, like so many other cities have, and name it after him?

In your scribe’s humble opinion, that’s analogous to saying, “Here’s the salt; here’s the wound, start rubbing!”

If we have to do this to keep up with the other 700 cities who went before us, why not pick a unifying East to West street? You want to show unification, give me an MLK that traverses our city from side to side, something that ties us all together. Not something that divides us.

Take 63rd Street. It goes from the butt crack of Mission Hills, all the way across our city to the armpit of Grandview – from the best of the best to the worst of the worst with everything in between. Think unification.

clay6Ebony and Ivory, living in perfect harmony.

It’s simple, I have a dream.

The first step being to start a petition, get Clay Chastain back in town. Have him go from grocery store to grocery store from Mission Hills (Prairie Village) to Ward Parkway to start with. Tell the residents we’re going to change their street name from 63rd to MLK Blvd. Let’s see how many of those residents demonstrate the content of character and sign up for that one.

And Clay thought light rail was hard. Good luck, buddy.

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25 Responses to Paul Wilson: Breaking News – Double Homicide at 13th and…MLK?

  1. Orphan of the Road says:

    The optimist is one who when smelling roses, imagines they make a better soup than cabbage.

    Perhaps change the name of Prospect to Suspect?

    While the grifters fleece the poor of money intended to help their lot in life by hiring relatives and benefactors with those funds. Keeping po’ folk, of all colors & flavors, thinking THOSE people are keeping you down.

    While Dr. Martin Luther King, JR spins like a dreidel in his tomb seeing how his message has been sidetracked for personal profit.

    And since East of Troost is the sad tale of the Paris of the Plains, renaming it MLK Blvd would forever seal that deal.

    • paulwilsonkc says:

      As I said, Orphan, here’s the salt, here’s the wound, start rubbing.
      Thanks, as usual. Always a unique perspective.

  2. harley says:

    boring. waste of time. zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
    who cares!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    maybe the racists will get upset. zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
    stationary….change maps….my oh my!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • SmartManFromBeyond says:

      I’m convinced. There is no way in hell an actual grown man wrote this; Harley just has to be an alter ego. Someone fess up.

      Now please just stop, watching you comment is like watching a retard shadow box.

      You know if you didn’t come on here and start throwing your feces everywhere, someone just might take you seriously and think your opinion counts.

      Don’t like my words, sue me! Better yet, come after me. Surprise, Gentiles only here, screwed again, Harlenstein!

      You’re old and unsuccessful, don’t live the lifestyle you claim, thus understandably bitter. Lashing out is the predictable response from stupid people. Some do it on internet forums. Others do it from underneath a manhole cover with a rifle.

      I just want you to know that we understand

  3. KCMonarch says:

    You’re proposing they re-route 63rd street south to Grandview? That will be a little more extensive than updating stationary letterhead.

  4. SmartmanFromBeyond says:

    Damn Wilson, you’ve pissed off Jews, lawyas, gays, Cajuns, MLK name change supporters specifically, blacks in general and now harley.
    Thank God, and I can see him from here, no one cares about harley. The only difference between harley and a bag of bat feces is the bag.
    No need to change the name to MLK, no lemonade to be made from this lemon.

    • harley says:

      miss ya smarmyman…
      hows biz in the there and beyond?
      rest easy.
      Harley is still winning…and is always right.
      take care.

  5. Libertarian says:

    Happy James Earl Ray Day, everyone!

  6. Robertoe says:

    I have no opinion on a Troost name change but I do need to call you out for citing MLKing’s ‘philandering’. King was a great American who expoused peace and reconsiliation. Before his assasination by the powers-that-be, he had shifted his focus to opposing the Viet Nam War.

    You are providing a great example of why we can’t allow our Big Brother government to vacum up all our communications. MLKing ruffled feathers of the powers and was starting to shift into high gear on anti-war activites. The Thought Police decided we can’t allow this and decides to take him down and out him on his womanizing. See how this works? If the guys gathering the info decide who they want to take down and what they want to release, the call is all theirs. We now know more about J Edgar Hoover. He went way past womanizing. I’m betting these thought police were not pure as the driven snow. Yet because they had the dirt on King he goes down in history as a ‘philanderer’. And you’re helping to spread this inequity. Quit spreading the BS about MLKing’s personal life that never should have come out.

    • paulwilsonkc says:

      Fair enough, Robertoe, but WAS he or WASN’T he? The overwhelming evidence is he had many mistresses.

  7. Robertoe says:

    He was. And the Church Commission clearly identified an aggressive formal FBI program to ‘publicly discredit him with churches, universities and the press’.

    I’ve got a big problem with this kinda power hungry governmental agency vendetta. They think they can decide which civil rights leaders are worthy and take down the ones they want? And if you come out against the war machine- King called the U.S. military ‘ the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today’- then they can take ANY AND ALL dirt you’ve ever done and spread it far and wide. This is not ok. And unfortunately these malignant capacities have only gotten worse.

  8. Rick Nichols says:

    Seems to me that I’ve seen opposing viewpoints on some of the issues of the day placed side by side in the lower right-hand corner of the Star’s Op-Ed page, said viewpoints having been supplied by editorial writers from various papers. Crank out a letter to the editor if you’re so inclined at this point, but if I were a betting man I wouldn’t shell out so much as a dollar on your chances of seeing that letter find its way into print. No, this whole “flap” over Troost vs. MLK Jr. Drive reminds me of that lipstick on a pig thing from a couple of years ago. Call the street what you want. The only thing that’s going to improve race relations in this city is circumcision of the heart.

    • paulwilsonkc says:

      Rick, always well reasoned comments from you and thanks for that. I couldn’t agree with you more. I sent an email to the Mayor after he made a comment to me on Twitter about a piece I did on the Mayor being blamed for not lowering the murder rate.
      We have a culture of violence, plain and simple. It requires jobs, education, a rebuilding of the family unit both morally and spiritually as a START! Gun control laws wont stop it, a cop on each corner wont stop it and a Mayor can’t legislate it into being.
      Thanks again.

  9. Wert says:

    I’ve been pondering what Obama means to various parties throughout the physical world, spiritual world, and the devil in particular. If there was ever a US President perfect for this time in human history it’s Obama. He’s crummy for us in the USA but ideal for satan! Think about every single agenda that satan needs to advance in order to achieve what God describes in His Word and no other human figure that I can think of is enabling so much harm so quickly on such a broad scale. From his disdain for Israel, open affections for the Brotherhood, support of gay marriage, support of abortion on demand, and socialistic administration hell bent on systematically destroying the Constitution he is the perfect foil for satan..perfect!! God raises up rulers and takes them down after they have accomplished His objectives and Obama is no different. The all encompassing, exponential moral and economic decay in our country is breathtaking and Obama is thee premier facilitator of it all. He’s a puppet and a poorly veiled one at that!! Obama is the ideal man for satan at this point in human history and praise be to God for His sovereignty. I believe God raised up Obama and attached him to the puppeteers strings to help bring about conditions for the soon coming tribulation. So while I deeply mourn for the country I once knew, I know in my heart that god is in control and Obama is satan’s tool for these last days. I will be stunned of he isn’t the POTUS when the Rapture occurs. It stinks for us big time because of the vile rot that is occurring so rapidly here in the US but God’s plan was set in motion before the foundation of the world was ever put in place and we are blessed to be witnesses to it, as hard as it is to watch. Please keep looking up, dear brothers and sisters, as God stages the final pieces for the final act soon to commence on the human race.

    • paulwilsonkc says:

      Wow, Wert, I don’t even know where to start, so I most likely wont. Thats a pretty interesting view and one I differ with on more than a few levels.
      If you take the Bible literally or not, which I dont, I think the tribulation period was most likely written about Nero and the incredible persecution going on at the time he was in power. That, was a period of tribulation.
      Too much of the end times talk was directed at things the people, while the Bible was being written, were seeing in their day, things they would see in their life.
      I do believe in a second coming event, but not a rapture scenerio. And, this is likely going to upset you, but I’d bet you have the entire Left Behind series in your book case at home, also totally flawed writing, Biblically. Makes for a great series of novels, but Max wrote them as Non-FICTION.
      Thanks for your comment, I just didnt want to take this into Obama basing or Obama is the Anti Christ direction.
      And no, Im NOT an Obama fan.

  10. Super Dave says:

    I’m sorry what pisses me off about all this is the fact that Troost is named after Dr. Benoist Troost. Dr. Troost was the first resident physician in the Kansas City area and as well one of the founding fathers of this town. So he earned a right to have a street named after him. Not saying I am against any street being named after Dr. King, I just don’t feel that renaming a street named after a person who really did something towards building Kansas City, for someone who didn’t personally roll up his sleeves and work at making Kansas City a city. How about they rename Emanuel Cleaver II Boulevard as Martin Luther King Boulevard?

    • paulwilsonkc says:

      That’s similar to my idea, Dave, pick an East West street. ECBII starts just east of Main. Drag 47th all the way through the Plaza as MLK then let all the little scholars flash mob up at the coffee shop where those dreaded motorcycles park for free!
      That solves several problems including Hearnes thorn in his side with the biker dudes!

    • Davey Jones Locker says:

      How dare you types stir such racists talk. MLK is a savior to the country the martyr for civil rights!! What did Main or Broadway ever do for Kansas City? I’m just playing devils advocate here – not serious! Careful though if a clown at a poe dunk MO state fair can get their t1t in a ringer for a satirical skit you’ll damn sure be called out on the R card for kicking MLK under the bus for Troost!! – Just saying it used to be a far fetched idea. Not anymore

  11. John Altevogt says:

    Under Pepper’s control, The Star’s editorial page has become one of the paper’s most Stalinist elements. Opponents, right and left, of the paper’s editorial position will usually be restricted to the 200 word limit and letters from public officials who have been targeted by one of The Star’s hateschrifts have been restricted from any critique of the reporters involved. Again, this is not simply aimed at conservatives. I know of local activists on the left who have opposed The Star’s editorial positions who are treated in exactly the same manner. It’s just that conservatives have more disagreements with Star editorial positions than those on the left.

    The other main point of censorship at The Star comes from its thin-skinned public editor, Derek Donovan. If you don’t accept his useless vague assertion of quasi-support, he’ll turn on you like a rabid dog. Many have been blocked from commenting on his own personal blog (as well as the paper in general) when they pointed out a discrepancy between his statements and the truth. There is good reason to no longer refer to him as a “Reader’s Rep”. He never was one, and never will be.

    From experience, I’ve found that the reporters themselves are far more open to criticism than either editorial, or Donovan. Often their stories have been significantly altered from the copy they submitted and so they know all too well how badly it represents what they actually saw in front of them.

  12. Sergent Shriver Stedenko says:

    It would be inappropriate to name the atreet mlk blvd because that was the heart of the mlk riots that lit the city a flame in 68 and caused white flight. Hell they should name a street after him in independence or raytown. Without the MLK riots working class whites would still live in the eastside.

    • paulwilsonkc says:

      Sergent, understand your point. I know some people taking a small but significant stand in the East side. A professional who just transfered to town, young, small child and pregger wife, wanted to live in the city. Now, these are people who could, financially, live wherever they wanted, ok?
      Talking to real estate a locals about their desire, they were, without fail, told, Union Hill, Hyde Park, lots of good places to live… and he said, EACH of them without also added, “but you DONT look EAST of Troost.”
      You know what they did? Bought a phenominal house EAST of Troost and love it. They got it for pennies and immedaitly began to get visits from very nice neighbors, asking them if they were nuts!?
      They are starting to form community….. EAST of Troost. If m0re had the same nerve I think you’d see a change. Maybe its starting now!
      Thanks for your comment.

  13. samuel says:

    Oh my amazing benefits! an amazing article dude. Thank you However I ‘m experiencing downside to ur really simply syndication . Don

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