Outrage ensued after the City of Camden diverted a grant of 229,000 allocated for the preservation of this Camden home at 753 Walnut St. in Southern New Jersey. The legacy of this Historical Leader is now being exploited.
Photo Credit Yordan Tamayo – Jerez
Martin Luther King spent time in South Jersey among other US cities. He led African Americans into freedom and prosperity while laying the foundation for the equality and respect that Americans are accustomed to today. There is evidence suggesting that nearly 70 years ago, in the 1950’s, an incident took place in Maple Shade, N.J, where Martin Luther King and friends visited Mary’s Café, located at the intersection of Route 73 and Main street. Several accounts have peaked news stories, but nothing has been veritably confirmed yet.
On Sunday, radio hosts from different networks decided to discuss this controversial topic. Radio host Paul Dilks and co-host Steve Pakradooni on 1360 AM, along Joe Kane, creator of Thunder World Radio, and activist Jerome Taylor examined the outrage that this story is creating. In 2014, all three hosts joined in the protest of the city’s demolition of a row home at 940 Newton St. in Camden. King had been suspected of visiting there occasionally. Back then, Paul questioned the timing and the rush to knock down a possible home where one of the most Historical African American Leaders of our time could have frequented.
In the 1990s, Susan Cedrone. a social worker, made a series of home visits to the residence on Newton St. She noticed 5 black and white photographs on the wall and recognized the young King in each of the photos. Further, while inspecting documents, during Sunday’s radio show, it was concluded that these papers, statements from the bar owner and his attorney. Have been overlooked for decades giving real validity to the story. However, King apparently attended Seminary in nearby PA. Hence these alleged visits to Camden are likely and cohesive.
Sunday’s show was streamed live on the internet. It didn’t take long for Paul Dilks, now running for US Congress in South Jersey, to begin receiving threats of litigation . Attacking him on Social Media and going as far as floating the idea of bringing in a national group to protest him. To sway paul from continuing this story on his SJ radio show . In fact, the same vultures that quite possibly deceived the public by altering facts to empower their agenda. No meaningful nor visible change has been witnessed, lending to the conclusion that nothing remains sacred, not even the legacy of Dr. King.
In Kings memory, more should be done to ensure Historic Icons like King are never used for financial gain or exploitation. When there is money and power at stake, there will always be people seeking to capitalize, even at the expense of a historical legend as Dr. Martin Luther King.
Emmy Skylar started working for Debate Report in 2017. Emmy grew up in a small town in northern Manitoba. But moved to Ontario for university. Before joining Debate Report, Emmy briefly worked as a freelance journalist for CBC News. She covers politics and the economy.