Again, Google is your friend. Roger Ailes (the good one) draws our attention all too clearly to one Jay Nordlinger whose bootlicking accounts of the greatness of Rudy and the RNC audience already made Molly Ivors sick to her stomach. But I digress. Here's Jay on his bestest buddy Bill "some of the virtues" Bennet taking the reverend martin luther king to the woodshed for puffing off his academic credentials when as everyone knows he was nothing more than a self taught, race baiting backwoods preacher:
A King’s Honorific [Jay Nordlinger]
Longtime readers may have heard me make this point before — probably so. Martin Luther King is almost always referred to as “Dr. King.” As our Rick Brookhiser once observed, he is basically the only deceased person habitually known as “Dr.” Somebody. (Another one is Johnson, as in Samuel.) (You might cite Doolittle, too, but let’s not get silly.)
Bill Bennett, when he was education secretary, did something really, really neat. One year, on King Day, it was his turn to go down to Atlanta and represent the administration. And, throughout his remarks, he referred to King as “Reverend King” — not “Dr. King.” This placed King as a religious figure, not a mere Ph.D.-holder (and let’s not get into that controversy, either).
At the Democratic convention, it was mainly “Dr. King,” of course. But once — from one of the introducers — it was “Reverend King.” And that made me smile (and think of Bennett).
And here's what a passing familiarity with Trollope's whiter than white Barchester Towers would have told him: Reverends are often referred to as "Doctor" because the distinction between academic and religious studies is a later one. And the Google would have told Jay (and Bennett) if they had cared to have one fifty second of honesty in their lives:
In September of 1951, Martin Luther King began doctoral studies in Systematic Theology at Boston University. He also studied at Harvard University. His dissertation, "A Comparison of God in the Thinking of Paul Tillich and Henry Wieman," was completed in 1955, and the Ph.D. degree from Boston, a Doctorate of Philosophy in Systematic Theology, was awarded on June 5, 1955.
I particularly like the side line bitchery of "lets not get into that controversy" which alludes to, but doesn't have the courage of, its own conviction that King didn't deserve the title of "Doctor." But this kind of long running feud, which can't let go of the white racist rage of the fifties and sixties at the same time that it denies that rage and spite existed, is par for the course at Bill Buckley's old haunt. Incredible! African Americans used honorifics to describe and refer to members of their own community! Next they'll be demanding that white people stop calling them all "George" or adding "Auntie" or "Uncle" to their given names. And Jay was just trying to be polite, you know.