Martin Luther King Called For Boycott Of Coke & Wonder Bread Day Before His Assassination
By Martin Hill
[Originally published January 17, 2011.]



"We don't need no molotov cocktails. We just need to go back to these stores, and to these massive industries in our country, and say 'God sent us by here. To say to you that you're not treating His children right." MLK

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On this Martin Luther King Jr. Day, I thought it would be interesting to revisit some of the last words he spoke. The day before he died, April 3, 1968, Martin Luther King called for a boycott of several products in Memphis; Coca-Cola & Wonder bread among them.
You can listen to that portion of the speech below.

Hostess Brands lists six bakery locations in Los Angeles County. Coca Cola Bottling Company of Southern California "began bottling operations in Los Angeles in 1902" . Critics of Coca Cola and Wonder Bread can still be found, if one looks for them. But they certainly never gained the prominence one would expect given the fact that a boycott was suggested by Dr. King, considered by many to be an American icon.

There is a somewhat recent documentary titled Dispatches: Mark Thomas on Coca-Cola 1/5 which is touted as 'highly recommended' by many news and information junkies on the internet. I watched it a few years ago and found it very interesting.

As far as Wonder Bread, there are various blogs and discussions about it. DailyKos ran a discussion thread titled 'Why Wonder Bread Ain't So Wonderful', with one poster remarking "My mom picked up a piece of Wonder Bread once, flapped it around, and said, "You wonder if it's bread."

BNET (The CBS Interactive Business Network) published an article in May 2010 titled 'The Harsh New Reality for Biotech Food: Show Consumer Benefits or Else', covering genetically modified wheat, biotech crops, and Monsanto. The article states that "two trade groups representing companies like Sara Lee (SLE) and Hostess Brands said they would be willing to support GM wheat, but only if it has "enhanced characteristics" - either more nutrients for consumers or improved milling or baking properties for them." Reuters also ran an article on the topic. ran a piece in August 2010 noting 'Monsanto steps up its global campaign for GM acceptance' with a "COMMENT from Dr Brian John of GM-free Cymru: Monsanto is stepping up its brainwashing campaign (actually they call it "GM advocacy and education")..."

On their company website, Hostess Brands states, in part, "Recently we launched Nature's Pride, a 100-percent all-natural, no preservatives, line of premium and traditional breads."

Also in May 2010, AboveTopSecret ran a thread US: President's Cancer Panel Says: EAT ORGANIC! with excerpts: "President's Cancer Panel 2009 Report: Environmentally caused cancers are 'grossly underestimated' and 'needlessly devastate American lives.' - What Individuals Can Do: At the same time, individuals can take important steps in their own lives to reduce their exposure to environmental elements that increase risk for cancer and other diseases. And collectively, individual small actions can drastically reduce the number and levels of environmental contaminants.
For example: Storing and carrying water in stainless steel, glass, or BPA- and phthalate-free containers will reduce exposure to endocrine-disrupting and other chemicals that may leach into water from plastics. Exposure to pesticides can be decreased BY CHOOSING, TO THE EXTENT POSSIBLE, FOOD GROWN WITHOUT PESTICIDES OR CHEMICAL FERTILIZERS. Similarly, exposure to antibiotics, growth hormones, and toxic run-off from livestock feed lots can be minimized by eating free-range meat raised without these medications if it is available."

A decade ago there was a lawsuit against Wonder Bread and in August 2000 interview, the plantiff's attorney said "But the racism at IBC (Wonder Bread's parent company) is deep rooted -- it is at the top." Also in August 2000, the San Francisco Examiner: ran 'Wonder Bread hit with race-bias fine', noting "The nation's largest wholesale baker, maker of Wonder Bread and Twinkies, has been ordered to pay one of the nation's largest racial discrimination damage awards: $121 million to past and present black employees who said they were abused and denied promotions at facilities in San Francisco, Oakland and Santa Clara." The article included comments from plantiffs, and noted that the company planned to appeal the decision.

The company has had numerous aquisitions and name changes, and closed several stores after filing for bankruptcy.

Martin Luther King Jr. Calls for Boycott Coke & Wonder Bread .

This article was originally published January 17, 2011; Copyright Martin Hill. .

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Martin Hill is a Catholic paleo-conservative and civil rights advocate. His work has been featured in the Los Angeles Daily News, San Gabriel Valley Tribune, The Orange County Register, KNBC4 TV Los Angeles, The Press Enterprise,,,,, Economic Policy Journal, FreedomsPhoenix, Haaretz, TMZ, Veterans Today, Jonathan Turley blog, The Dr. Katherine Albrecht Show, National Motorists Association,,, WorldNetDaily,,,,, Dr. Kevin Barrett's Truth Jihad radio show,,, Mark Glenn's 'The Ugly Truth' Blog & radio show, Michael Hoffman's, John Friend's, Pasadena Weekly,, Los Angeles Catholic Lay Mission Newspaper, KFI AM 640,, Redlands Daily Facts,, BlackBoxVoting, The Michael Badnarik Show, The Wayne Madsen Report,,,,, The Contra Costa Times, Pasadena Star News, Silicon Valley Mercury News, Long Beach Press Telegram, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, L.A. Harbor Daily Breeze,,, Whittier Daily News, KCLA FM Hollywood, The Fullerton Observer, and many others. Archives can be found at and DontWakeMeUp.Org.

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