Hey, everyone. Happy Martin Luther King Jr. Day! Except to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Today, the FBI honors the life and work of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. A quote from Dr. King is etched in stone at the FBI Academy’s reflection garden in Quantico as a reminder to all students and FBI employees: “The time is always right to do what is right.” #MLKDay pic.twitter.com/UKMLAAZw5w
— FBI (@FBI) January 20, 2020
It’s a whole thing, but people haven’t forgotten the agency’s ugly history with the civil rights icon. They won’t forget anytime soon.
— Letters of Note (@LettersOfNote) January 20, 2020
The bureau once sent King an anonymous letter. The letter, meant to appear written by a black person, told King to die by suicide.
“King, there is only one thing left for you to do,” the letter-writer stated. “You know what it is.”
Federal investigators later found that the FBI engaged in a campaign to discredit King even after his death because then-Director J. Edgar Hoover loathed the civil rights figure.
“Evidence obtained by the committee indicated that the allegation that Dr. King posed a threat to national security was merely a convenient rationalization used by the Director to justify his personal vendetta against the civil rights leader,” they wrote.
With all that in mind, the FBI is a popular target for on Twitter. That pattern continued Monday.
They do this every year, as if they’re trolling at this point. https://t.co/fYVbtnt6ex
— Imraan Siddiqi (@imraansiddiqi) January 20, 2020
Maybe sit this one out. https://t.co/8gDD8fK3bM
— Spencer Ackerman (@attackerman) January 20, 2020
You hated him then and you’d hate him today if he were alive. https://t.co/xbltHzMIfD
— Wagatwe Wanjuki 🇰🇪 🇧🇸 (@wagatwe) January 20, 2020
Would it have killed you to add “we have tried to learn from our gross mistreatment of him”?https://t.co/WZoz8KLTRn
— DopesAnd/OrBabiesHat (@Popehat) January 20, 2020
Poet and former BuzzFeed editor Saeed Jones literally had no words.
— Saeed Jones (@theferocity) January 20, 2020
James Comey, one of Hoover’s successors, has called the the agency’s surveillance of King “shameful.”
[Image via MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images]