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June 12, 2005
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Obfuscation, manipulation, lies, greed, and distortion of the facts have characterized this case, allowing James Earl Ray to escape full blame. The truth of the matter is that Ray murdered King and he acted alone when he shot him. One or both of Ray's brothers -- before and/or after the fact -- may have aided him.
by Mel Ayton
More than 35 years after the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. polls continue to indicate that the truth about the murder is still unclear for the majority of Americans. Despite government investigations and extensive research by writers who have concluded that no evidence is available to support the claims made by the conspiracy advocates, the case remains one of America's great whodunits.
Doubts about James Earl Ray, Dr. King's lone assassin, arose almost immediately after the civil rights leader was fatally shot on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis on April 4, 1968. From the start, during King's funeral, his aides voiced suspicions that a conspiracy was responsible for their leader's death.
The political culture of America in the late 1960s and 1970s was very favorable to any theory that gave credence to government- oriented murder plots against public figures who challenged the authority of the establishment. The U.S. public, confronted with a litany of stories about the Kennedy assassinations, CIA plots against foreign leaders, and the scandalous reports about J. Edgar Hoover's FBI domestic spying activities, were ready to believe that a pathetic individual like James Earl Ray must have received some kind of assistance from sophisticated plotters -- most likely in the pay of the government.