“Listen to his speech, ‘I’ve Been To The Mountaintop,’ delivered the evening before he was assassinated,” tweeted MLK’s youngest daughter Bernice King yesterday to Denver Republican Party Leader Kristina Cook. “My father knew his time on earth was short. He stood by his nonviolent philosophy. He would not have wanted a gun battle on his behalf. Don’t use him for this.”
King’s tweet came in response to a Facebook comment by Cook, in which she wrote, “I Bet MLK Wishes He’d Had A Sniper by his Side That Day.”
Cook made the comment after another Facebook commenter posted an old photo of Cook with a gun, and a commenter stated that it’s no wonder Cook was unwanted at Denver’s MLK march and that MLK would not approve of the firearm.
In a statement, Cook said, “Regardless of the context of the conversation, my comment about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. drew the attention of Dr. Bernice King. Her tweet helped me understand that while I wish that he’d had a protective detail on that day so that he’d still be with us, that would not have been her father’s wish. I have reached out privately to Dr. King to thank her for helping me understand her father’s perspective. I will also be issuing a public response to her tweet following an opportunity to speak with her further.
“We could use Dr. Martin Luther King’s presence in this divided world. Doctored memes like the one being circulated of me only serve to increase the division, when in a case like this both sides share the same ultimate respect for Dr. King. The Denver County Republican Party will continue to reach a hand over that divide in the hopes that we can join others looking to find unity, peace and healing for our community.”
Later, a meme circulated with both Cook’s old photo of herself with the gun–as well as Cook’s comment about MLK. This doctored image, initially appearing in this article, has been removed.
Cook is scheduled to deliver a lunch-time speech, along with former El Paso GOP Leader Tamra Farah, to Douglas County Republican Women Wednesday, Sept. 18, on the subject of “Being an Effective Republican in an Unaffiliated World.”
Cook is perhaps best known as a former Denver talk radio host, having anchored KLZ 560-AM’s “Grassroots Radio Colorado” show, before resigning when the station banned the GOP Chair Steve House and former U.S. Rep. Tom Tancredo from the radio’s air waves, after Tancredo and former Attorney General Cynthia Coffman allegedly pressured then House to resign, or else they would release information about an alleged affair.
On the radio and off, Cook has defended many conservatives and their causes. For example, she sided with conservative Jefferson School Board members in 2014 in trying to defend their proposal to restrict the district’s history curriculum. Cook called protesting students “pawns” of progressive activists who objected to the curriculum.
GOP gun proponents in Colorado often aren’t shy in their social media postings and promotions about guns, some offering rifles in raffles.
The Douglas County Republican Party had this meme on its Facebook page this week: “No civilian needs an AR-15. They need a M134.”
In her statement, Cook also addressed the doctored image that included both her old photo and her quote about MLK and the sniper.
Cook wrote, “On Tuesday, as happens too often in the current political climate, a comment made as part of an online conversation was photoshopped to appear connected with a photo taken 3 years ago. This action was taken in an effort to misrepresent the intent of my comment. I wish the thread was still available for people to judge for themselves, but in
the interest of maintaining this ruse, the other party has deleted the thread.”
CORRECTION: This post was updated to include information about Cook’s photoshopped quote and photo. The image was deleted. Cook’s statement was added. In addition, the fact that Steve House was also banned from KLZ was also included.