He informed an unmarried woman grappling with whether to have sex that “real men still respect purity and virginity” and .
Martin Luther King saw women as less than. And he saw women in general and black women specifically as "less than" in much the same way that white people see black people as "less than." And this failure of his colored his judgment and changed his behaviors in critical areas of life.
Some will say that King's sexist outlook on life, was "just the way things were back then" --in the very same tones that white people use when talking about their ancestor's deadly racism. Some will say that his sexism had little impact. But the truth is King's sexism had outcomes in his marriage, the movement, the black community, and his legacy.
Martin's advice in Ebony, placing the responsibility for an affair on a wife's shoulders: "When a woman asked what to do about her husband's extramarital affair, King told her to think of what the other woman might have to offer that she did not. What faults of her own might make her husband look elsewhere? "Do you nag?" King asked her."
Septima Clarke, Ella Baker, Dorothy Height, Pauli Murray, and Anna Arnold Hedgeman would all struggle with sexism within the Civil Rigthts Movement. Septima Clarke said the bulk of this unequal treatment for women was coming from Dr. King.
This disrespect for black women was revealed during the March On Washington when only one black woman was allowed to speak during the regular program--after Anna Arnold Hedgeman battled mightily for it to be otherwise. Daisy Bates, former President of Arkansas Chapter of NAACP, leader of the Little Rock Nine, who had an eight foot cross burned on her lawn was allowed to speak for a little more than 60 seconds.* https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3UG7YCgkXTo
Rosa Parks and Gloria Richardson attempting to speak (rather than sitting mute) on the day of the March resulted in them being put in cab and sent back to the local hotel. And they were in that cab during Martin Luther King's "I Have A Dream" speech.
See William P Jones Book
The March on Washington: Jobs, Freedom, and the Forgotten History of Civil Rights
When you look at Martin Luther King from a black female perspective, it becomes clear that just like this Abraham Lincoln speech was really for white men only -
Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal...
This Martin Luther King speech
was really for black men only -