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Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

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Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

Old 02-11-10, 01:25 PM
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Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

This should have been all over the news. Wonder what MLK would have thought of today's communist Chinese building his memorial? Wonder why US craftsmen and materials were not suitable for the project? Will it have a huge "Made In China" label? It's one thing if it was a gift from China such as the Statue of Liberty was to the US...but a made to order MLK memorial?

Really bad timing for this as most of the unemployed are tradespeople in the US.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...021003852.html

Massive King memorial nearly ready for trip to Mall for assembly

By Michael E. Ruane
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, February 11, 2010

Sometime in the next several weeks, if all goes as planned, 159 huge blocks of granite will be loaded aboard ships in the seaport of Xiamen, China, for an 11,000-mile journey to Washington.

Bound for a site on the Tidal Basin, the cargo includes one block that bears the likeness of Martin Luther King Jr. and the dreams of generations of African Americans.

The other blocks -- which weigh as much as 55 tons each -- make up the rest of the mammoth, three-part sculpture that is the centerpiece of the $120 million memorial to the slain civil rights leader. Assembly is scheduled to begin this year.

Authorized by Congress in 1996, the King memorial has weathered 14 years of fundraising challenges, artistic controversy and bureaucratic squabbles.

Complaints erupted when a sculptor in China was selected to execute the chief parts of the design. More trouble came after the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts criticized the sculptor's image of King as too grim and totalitarian. And the project was held up for months recently by a dispute over the kind of security elements the memorial should have.

But on Oct. 29, with problems resolved, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar signed the construction permit. Work on the site began in December, a project official said. Total construction time is estimated to be 20 months.

Next month, a delegation from the Washington-based foundation that is building the memorial is scheduled to visit China for a final look at the sculpture before its shipment here, currently set for sometime in March or April.
Old 02-11-10, 01:32 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

If it's a Gian memorial, doesn't that imply that it was made in Gia?

Dr. King was, if not an outright communist, extraordinarily sympathetic to communism. I don't know if he'd care for the outsourcing, but I don't think he'd be concerned that we outsourced to a communist country instead of a capitalist one.
Old 02-11-10, 01:33 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

Irony?
Old 02-11-10, 01:37 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

JasonF, you don't think Dr. King would have been appalled at the oppression that many Chinese experience today (an oppression not unlike that experienced by many African Americans in this country during his time)? China is certainly not practicing the type of "communism" that Dr. King might have had a dream of.

And an attack on a typo error? I thought this forum had better minds. I guess those days are long gone.

Last edited by shifrbv; 02-11-10 at 01:41 PM.
Old 02-11-10, 01:37 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

I don't think outsourcing had been invented when King died. However, three Presidents and Congress owe us an answer to the question on everyone's mind, "WTF?"

Why was a memorial like this funded by Congress and every step monitored and controlled by the Administrations in power outsourced to China. Are we short of sculptors, rocks or what? Or are US wages too high, and even the government can't afford to "Buy American."

If it was just finally kicked off last fall, certainly spending the money HERE would have been a bigger help to the US economy. Do we really need to stimulate China's economy? Finally, what poisonous rocks did they make it out of?
Old 02-11-10, 01:41 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

Ultimate Irony?
Alanis Morissette srikes again.
That or the Chinese workers who made it are really, really racist, believe blacks are inferior, and believe in the sanctity of marriage.
Old 02-11-10, 01:41 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

i dont think the king memorial was funded by congress
Old 02-11-10, 01:52 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

Originally Posted by Venusian View Post
i dont think the king memorial was funded by congress
It's not been funded by Congress. However, from the article the whole thing seems like a really weird undertaking. Fighting and wrangling and in the end, they'll have a huge monolith, allowed to be larger than even Jefferson or Lincoln's statue. Seems really weird to have a non-elected figure with a larger statue than one of the founding fathers or even Lincoln, himself, who presided over the time of the freeing of the slaves and was the first to be shot for it.

Last edited by shifrbv; 02-11-10 at 01:55 PM.
Old 02-11-10, 01:57 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

Originally Posted by JasonF View Post
If it's a Gian memorial, doesn't that imply that it was made in Gia?

Dr. King was, if not an outright communist, extraordinarily sympathetic to communism. I don't know if he'd care for the outsourcing, but I don't think he'd be concerned that we outsourced to a communist country instead of a capitalist one.


Remember Mena, Arkansas?
Old 02-11-10, 02:10 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

Originally Posted by Venusian View Post
i dont think the king memorial was funded by congress
It is mostly funded by private donations. However, to pick nits (because we do it so well here), a little Googling shows Congress voted $10 million in matching funds for the memorial fund-raising campaign, provided the national land (4 acres in DC is worth a little), and they appear to be funding a vistor center associated with the memorial ($$??).

Given that the money is going to buy Chinese rocks, I feel a LOT less guilty about not having donated. In fact, it doesn't trouble me at all.
Old 02-11-10, 02:12 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

I find this to be a violation of the principle of the separation of church and state. The Reverend King's statue should not be placed in a public area.
Spoiler:
Old 02-11-10, 02:16 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

Originally Posted by shifrbv View Post
JasonF, you don't think Dr. King would have been appalled at the oppression that many Chinese experience today (an oppression not unlike that experienced by many African Americans in this country during his time)? China is certainly not practicing the type of "communism" that Dr. King might have had a dream of.
No, that's an excellent point. I don't think he'd appreciate the oppression in China, regardless of whether he liked communism in theory.

And an attack on a typo error? I thought this forum had better minds. I guess those days are long gone.
It was meant as a light-hearted joke, not an attack. My apologies if you read it as an attck.
Old 02-11-10, 02:18 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

Originally Posted by OldDude View Post
Given that the money is going to buy Chinese rocks, I feel a LOT less guilty about not having donated.
Now I feel more guilty -- I had no idea Dee Dee Ramone was involved in this project.
Old 02-11-10, 02:19 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

Originally Posted by JasonF View Post
Now I feel more guilty -- I had no idea Dee Dee Ramone was involved in this project.
Sadly, Johnny Thunders could not be reached for comment.
Old 02-11-10, 02:25 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

I couldn't care less about this 'irony.'
Old 02-11-10, 02:38 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

I'd forgotten than was going to be a memorial.
Old 02-11-10, 02:43 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

Originally Posted by classicman2 View Post
I'd forgotten than was going to be a memorial.
Everyone forgets about the memorials in the Tidal Basin area anyhow.
Old 02-11-10, 02:49 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

Glad to see so many people here are OK with paying thirteen members of Metal Sculptors Local 363 and the Statue Raisers Local 21 $150/hour. At a total cost of $150 million.

We should just get rid of all statues not made in America.
Old 02-11-10, 02:51 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

Will its grandeur rival the Lincoln Memorial?
Old 02-11-10, 03:00 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

I think an Affirmative Action program named after King would have been the ultimate irony.
Old 02-11-10, 03:16 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

Nothing "ironic" about this, dontcha think?

Here's the memorial, by the way. It'll stand 2 1/2 stories tall:

Old 02-11-10, 03:30 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

The wikipedia entry about the memorial is very complete. This memorial has had difficulty getting finianced all through its gestation. At issue is that the Chinese government was willing to make a $25 million dollar donation to help meet the shortfall of donations and get themselves the job.

My opinion is that it looks terribly ugly. There needs to be a moritorium on monuments in DC until artistic sensibilites change. Maybe 50-100 years. Between the WWII monument that looks like it was designed by Albert Spier and Mussolini, the Rosevelt Memorial which is an overly complex post-modern funhouse, and now this proto-fascist "man of marble" awfulness. Modern art and artists are too absorbed in self-reflexivity and post modernism to make anything "meaningful" as a memorial or historical marker.

Oh, and MLK's jacket is buttoned wrong. "Me Chineee. Me no know how dresseee."

Last edited by Mabuse; 02-11-10 at 03:32 PM.
Old 02-11-10, 03:40 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

I like the WWII Memorial.

I agree about the FDR one - terrible - 'funhouse' is an apt description. Fortunately, that was relegated to the Tidal Basin so it's easily forgotten.

This MLK one is pretty meh.
Old 02-11-10, 03:50 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China



Maybe if they had sent the work out to Bangladesh instead of China they could have afforded finishing the carving.

Reminds me of this

Old 02-11-10, 05:57 PM
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Re: Ultimate Irony: Gian MLK Statue On The Washington Mall Made In China

Originally Posted by Mabuse View Post
The wikipedia entry about the memorial is very complete. This memorial has had difficulty getting finianced all through its gestation. At issue is that the Chinese government was willing to make a $25 million dollar donation to help meet the shortfall of donations and get themselves the job.

My opinion is that it looks terribly ugly. There needs to be a moritorium on monuments in DC until artistic sensibilites change. Maybe 50-100 years. Between the WWII monument that looks like it was designed by Albert Spier and Mussolini, the Rosevelt Memorial which is an overly complex post-modern funhouse, and now this proto-fascist "man of marble" awfulness. Modern art and artists are too absorbed in self-reflexivity and post modernism to make anything "meaningful" as a memorial or historical marker.

Oh, and MLK's jacket is buttoned wrong. "Me Chineee. Me no know how dresseee."
Proto-fascist? This is a very typical communist style statue. Have you ever seen the various war memorials in the soviet union? The triumphant worker giving his all for the party, right before he and his entire family are liquidated. Maybe one day we can get communism right.

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