GOP Governor of North Carolina Causes Controversy After Old Facebook Posts Resurface

Mark Robinson, a top Republican candidate for the position of North Carolina’s governor, made a series of social media posts in which he called Martin Luther King Jr. a “communist” and an “ersatz pastor.”

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Robinson, currently serving as the 35th lieutenant governor of NC, posted on Facebook in January 2018: “It is at once funny and sad that so many people will follow the lead of a bunch of atheists and worship an ersatz pastor as a deity.”

In another post that day, the Black politician attempted to dismiss the existence of racism, writing, “The ‘state of race relations’ exist[s] chiefly within your own mind.” He went on to mock a speech made by MLK, posting, “‘Free at last! Free at last! Thank God almighty we are free at last!’ Now what?”

Exactly one year beforehand, Robinson made another post to Facebook on the topic of MLK Day, this time refusing to take the federal holiday. “Tomorrow I will do my ‘service to the community’ by going to work to continue to support myself and my family so I’m not a leach on said community.”

The next day, Robinson posted, “I don’t like Communist. No matter what ‘color’ they are.” While he did not name MLK at the time, he later mentioned his social media posts in his 2022 book, writing, “Every political thought I had in my head, I put on there, up to and including my posting photos of Martin Luther King and calling him a communist.”

The controversial Facebook posts were made from 2015 onward, many of which were posted on MLK Day specifically. The resurfacing of Robinson’s comments comes at a time in which he has been trying to switch up his rhetoric, celebrating MLK instead.

In fact, at a recent campaign event, former President Donald Trump said Robinson was “better than Martin Luther King,” to which Robinson responded by saying he took it as a compliment and that they were “big shoes to fill.” Despite many of his social media assaults having focused on MLK, it didn’t end there. Robinson also downplayed slavery, attacked civil rights activist John Lewis, and denied that he was a part of the African American community.

Back in 2017, the politician brought up the brutal 1965 attack on Lewis by police officers at a peaceful protest, writing, “Hey John Lewis, Just because you got beat up by some Democrats in 1965 doesn’t mean you can’t get criticized by some Republicans in 2017.”

He then went on to diminish the horrors of slavery, saying, “Slavery of the mind is FAR worse than physical slavery. Slavery of the mind cannot be seen, cannot be made illegal, and is and always has been the greatest tool of Satan used against man….. and men against each other.”

Unfortunately, Robinson’s posts didn’t stop there. Months later, he said that he did not consider himself part of the African American community that “devalues its fathers, overburdens its mothers, and murders its children by the millions.”

Two years prior, Robinson wrote in another controversial post to Facebook that the Civil Rights Movement had the opposite intended effect. He said that it “was never about giving rights, it was about setting the stage to take rights away.”

This isn’t the first time Robinson has made headlines for his offensive comments. In the past, he has had a lot to say about the LGBTQ community, women, Muslims, and questionable conspiracy theories. He is also strongly in favor of banning abortions. If he is to become governor later this year, a wave of right-wing bills will likely follow.