King quotation botched
Etching in granite cost a lot of money. There was an approval process – a copy approval process. People signed off.
Compare his actual words to the abbreviated version. Which belong on a statue? The shorter version fits. The longer version belongs in a speech, maybe, a long winded speech.
“A spokesman for the U.S. Department of the Interior said Friday that Secretary Ken Salazar decided to have the quote changed. The Washington Post first reported on Friday the decision to change the inscription.
The phrase is modified from a sermon known as the "Drum Major Instinct," in which the 39-year-old King explained to his Atlanta congregation how he would like to be remembered at his funeral. He made the February 1968 speech just two months before he was assassinated in Memphis, Tenn.
In the speech, King's words seem more modest than the paraphrased inscription: "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. And all of the other shallow things will not matter."
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Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States