An investigative blogger has accused Shaun King, a key figure in the Black Lives Matter movement
, of misleading media icon Oprah Winfrey by pretending to be biracial in order to qualify for an “Oprah scholarship” to historically black Morehouse College. The blogger says King is white and has been lying about his ethnicity for years.
If Pate is right, Shaun King, who often uses black and white photographs of himself online rather than colour images, may have misled African-American hero Winfrey by applying for and accepting an Oprah Scholarship to the historically black Morehouse College. Oprah Scholarships are given exclusively to black men
“King, 35, has related the story of the hate crime on his blogs and in his recent self-help book, seemingly to bolster his credibility as an activist and as a self-help guru,” wrote the Daily Caller‘s Chuck Ross
. “While King has said that he was attacked by up to a dozen ‘racist’ and ‘redneck’ students, official records show that the altercation involved only one other student.”
“While I know that it’s in a right-wing publication, there was something that prevented me from instantly dismissing the article … I’ve seen a number of people on Daily Kos
complain that Shaun plays fast and loose with the truth,” wrote contributor Burt Miles
. “So I started to do some digging on the Internet and found a lot of information which, if true, makes me very concerned about Shaun, his motives, and how his actions could reflect badly on this site and be used to smear the Black Lives Matter movement.”
Miles continued: “Is there anything to all this, or is it some kind of organized smear campaign? And, if it is a smear campaign, how does it involve so many different sites, publications and individuals?”
It was around the same time that Breitbart contacted Vicki Pate, who has been investigating King’s claims for several years. Pate provided key documents that appear to show that King has two white parents and that he has been lying to the public about his race.
One of them is his birth certificate, listing his parents as Naomi Kay Fleming and Jeffery Wayne King and a birth date of September 17, 1979 in Versailles, Kentucky. King had already told journalists his mother was white
. So all that remained for Pate to determine was whether his father was white too.
King has always claimed that his father is black. But King’s father, Jeffery, is white, says Pate. She points to a man born 11 November 1955 in Campbell, Kentucky
who has been the subject of multiple arrests
, including for motoring and drug offences. That birth date would make him 23 at the time of Shaun King’s birth, the same age given on Shaun’s birth certificate.
The Jeffery Wayne King whose name and date of birth concord with Shaun King’s birth certificate is pictured below, in a 2007 police mug shot. Various documents give his name as “Jeffery” and “Jeffrey” Wayne King, names which are common variants of one another, but King Snr’s date of birth and place of residence is the same in all records.
|Jeffery Wayne King in 2007
|By 2015, Shaun King had finessed his account
of growing up black and suffering discrimination. “I was raised in rural Kentucky,” he told the blog Generation Progress.
“It was actually pretty rough. African Americans faced a lot of racism and discrimination growing up. I never really experienced overt racism myself until high school,” he claimed.
“I was put into a weird position when a huge group of students (who called themselves “rednecks”) hated me for no reason.”
King must have known while giving interviews as late as 2015 that Vicki Pate was tracking down his family history. But he continued to deliver craftily-worded answers to interview questions that gave the impression he was a person of color and that he had been the victim of hate crimes.
Neither is true, says Pate. She told Breitbart last night that King has never denied her accusations. “Shaun King has not denied the story to me, or anyone else, as far as I know,” she said. “Whenever it is mentioned on Twitter he simply blocks whoever is asking and reports them for ‘harassment.’ He did reply to one person but only to say, ‘Haters gonna hate.’ I myself have been suspended from Twitter just for posing the question.”
King did not return multiple requests
for comment via email and social media. He has since blocked us, too.