The Civil Rights Movement

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America, “the home of the brave and the land of the free.” The statement “land of the free” hasn’t always been the case for African-Americans. But fortunately, America is “the home of the brave” and through trials and tribulations they were able to achieve equality. Dating back to 1619 the first African-Americans were sold into slavery at Jamestown. Being a slave meant you were a human being owned by another and as slaves they were deprived of most of their rights as an American and were treated as a peace of property. Many more African-Americans were brought to America to supply the demand of force labor needed in the south to produce agriculture. Slavery of the African-Americans wasn’t abolished until the end of the Civil War which ended on April 26, 1865. The battles for equal rights weren’t over yet due to Jim Crow Laws established between 1877 and the 1950s. The Jim Crow Laws were any laws between 1877 and the 1950s that enforced racial segregation in the U.S., which included segregation of public facilities, education, and voting. But, African-Americans stood up against racial segregation during the 1950s in a movement towards equality called the Civil Rights Movement. Their efforts for equality paid off when in 1964 the Civil Rights Act was signed by President Lyndon B. Johnson. The Act forbids the discrimination in public accommodations. One year later the Voting Rights Act was passed giving all African-Americans the right to vote. Throughout the history of the struggles and battles the African-Americans faced they would not have been victorious if they weren’t guided by great leaders. There were many leaders who rose to the battle of equality but two of the most dominant figures were Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcol... ... middle of paper ... ... the path to freedom. His beliefs began to change and they began to converge with the beliefs of Martin Luther King Jr. But before he could use non-violence as a way to reach freedom he was assassinated on February 21, 1965. The blunt contrast between King and Malcolm was their views on achieving freedom. King saw non-violence as the only means of achieving equality whereas Malcolm felt violence was the only way to achieve freedom. In comparison, both men had dedicated their lives towards the civil rights movement. They both held mass meeting and marches in their fight for equality of their race. In their efforts for the civil rights movement they were assassinated for their efforts to reach racial equality. In the end, through their efforts they were able to make America what it is today, a nation where every person is entitled to the same rights and opportunities.

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