The Civil Rights Movement

The Civil Rights Movement

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When we look back on the history of America many events occurred that are either frowned upon, or seen as the glory days. The events that are the glory days or the highest points in American life such as Independence from England helped to make America what it is today. Those events that we look back on, that are not the best periods of time, such as slavery and African Americans fight for Rights in the 1960's, also helped to make the United States what it is today. When in the 1960's, leaders such as Martin Luther King, Jr., and religious leaders such as Malcolm X, stood forward to talk about the rights that were taken away from African Americans, they were look down upon. Today however, they are heroes to us. The steps and actions made by them to free the African American people from segregation, and for them to have a chance at having equal rights and liberties as stated by the constitution. After the end of slavery and the writing of the Emancipation Proclamation the first steps were made towards civil rights. The 1940's to the 1960's were a section in time where racial injustice was done to the African American people. As we came to the 1960's a change came to the United States in the goals, strategies, and the support towards the movement for African Americans civil rights.
The start of the 1960's brought on changes in the goals that were set by African Americans towards their civil rights. It started with the search for Desegregation of public facilities. The desegregation of schools, buses, and bathrooms, are just a few examples of what the African Americans hoped to change. A change in segregation came with the Brown vs. Board of Education trial. Later on as more African Americans began to see how the political structure of the United States worked; they decided that voting rights were prejudice towards people. Whites made tests that would disqualify many African Americans from voting, making it so that the white population could vote and a small majority of African Americans along with them. Organizations such as the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) were formed to help bring the rights that were stated in the constitution to the people. They did not use force, but just the freedom of speech as their main source of power. In the search for desegregation which was then made a law, that no person was to have a different facility and that all people were to be treated equally, came the protection of these rights.

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As the goals and strategies made more and more of an impact on society, the amount of supports African American and white also increase. Organizations such as CORE (The Congress of Racial Equality), SNCC, National Committee on Civil Rights, and the NAACP, increased in members more people became aware of the conflict surrounding the rights of African Americans. The white house and politicians started taking roles in the promising of rights. Groups in the south such as the "Freedom Riders" rose together to advocate for Civil Rights, would set up communities where money would circulate through African American owned businesses and companies. That way the money would not go to benefit the white communities, but just go back to African Americans. Malcolm X, an African American, would preach about the rights of the people, he would talk about the Islamic religion and how it helped a man through the tough times of racial discrimination. Leaders such as Martin Luther King, JR. gave speeches that would just shock people. All the pressure that built up helped the signing of a Civil Rights Bill, by President Eisenhower, and brought more attention for African American people in the US. The Selma to Montgomery March, in which 25,000 people took part in March, 1965 showed the support that was received. Media covered events like this, and these processions would lead to acts such as the signing of the Voting Rights Act, in 1965 by President Johnson. Support came from every direction, no longer was it just African Americans fighting for rights, nor just the North helping out; it was the United States as a whole overcoming this conflict.
In the late 1960's with all the support that was given to the people, a change was finally made in the United States. The Voting Rights Act and the Civil Rights Act of 1964 helped to give the rights that were being searched for by African Americans. Prejudice was not stopped completely, however the laws of equal rights to all people finally pertained to all citizens. The changes in goals, strategies, and support helped the country find balance, and a correct understanding of the constitution which said that "All men were created equal" and finally African Americans were now part of this.
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