Great, Powerful and Flawed

I have a decided to start reading more. When I was younger, I used to order books from the school book club and couldn’t wait for them to come. It was like Christmas for me. Then, after I went to bed, I would crack my bedroom door open, so that I could get light from the hallway and sneak and read my books under the covers. That is how much I loved reading.

I have to say that I stopped reading for a while for a few reasons, which I won’t go into, but now suddenly, I have an insatiable appetite for reading. Right now I’m interested in Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, President John F. Kennedy, Malcolm X and Maya Angelou. I’m also getting ready to go back to school and get my degree. It’s my biggest regret that I did not finish college. But that is about to change.

But that is not what this blog is about. I’ve made a new commitment to write on this blog again, but my posts will not resemble anything from the past. That is done and I’m on to a new future. I am going to finish school, write a few books and read, read, read. Which brings me to the book I just got finished reading.

The name of the book was called “I Shared the Dream” by Georgia Davis Powers. Georgia, who was the first Black senator and first woman senator in the state of Kentucky. She was elected in 1967 and served for 21 years. But I must admit that the reason I read the book is because I read she had an affair with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Many people don’t want to accept this, but Georgia was with Dr. King the night before he was assassinated. I know this to be true only because my oldest brother was mentored by a minister who was in Dr. Kings inner circle. This man confirmed it to my brother.

I remember when I first heard about Dr. Kings infidelities, I was shocked like most people. I remember my Dad, who drove cab in NY for many years telling us how he picked up Dr. King in his cab and how Dr. King lit up a cigarette and he was surprised and we were too (when he told us). But it’s also true, Dr. King was a smoker.

Well as I read Georgia Powers book, I started thinking about men and how there is nothing worse than putting another human being on a pedestal. Women, I think, have this problem more than men. And don’t let him be a man of wealth, prestige or fame. We go nuts!

Georgia was a few years older than Dr. King, middle aged, separated from her husband and not feeling very good about herself. And boom. This civil rights icon wants to take their friendship to another level and she just could not resist. It didn’t help that she had a dream that she was intimate with him, even though, she never had those feeling about him before. I have real issues with cheating, but I actually saw and understood how this could happen to a woman. Even me.

The affair part of their relationship lasted about a year until Dr. Kings death and I believe she was the last woman with him before he died. Not even his wife had been with him (and I mean both physically and sexually). The book dealt with much more than their affair. I found it quite interesting to hear the behind the scenes during that time and also about her own political career.

She seemed to gloat a bit, which women tend to do, when they have been singled out by a “special” man. You can tell that she thought she was the only mistress, but sadly, that is just not true. She also seemed unrepentant. Almost like it was her destiny to be intimate with this great man. I think she had a right to tell her story, but I have to say I was disappointed that she chose to tell it while Coretta Scott King was still alive.

It’s so hard for us to see our “heroes” this way. For many it takes away from their greatness and I have to say I have felt that way. But when we choose to see our heroes as they are, which is human, we will be able to see the good and the bad and appreciate them for what they did.

Georgia Davis Powers was very flawed like us all. She was a serial cheater, but she did a lot for civil rights and the state of Kentucky. She will have to stand before God for how she lived in her personal life as we all will. She is 91 years old still living with her husband.