Civil Rights Movement

Malcolm X, Stokely Carmichael, & MLK Jr.

Malcolm X

Malcolm X was the public voice of the Black Muslim faith, he challenged Martin Luther King Jr.'s nonviolent pursuit of integration. Malcolm's views were to defend yourself against any white aggression "by any means necessary." He was born Malcolm Little and he changed his last name to X to show his rejection of his "slave" name. Malcolm became an influential leader of the Nation of Islam, which combined Islam with black nationalism encouraged young blacks searching for confidence in segregated America. Malcolm X was assassinated in 1965. He laid the foundation for the Black Power movement of the late 1960s and 1970s.

Stokely Carmichael

Stokely Carmichael was a U.S. civil-rights activist who in the 1960s originated the black nationalism rallying slogan, "black power".He was born in Trinidad and he immigrated to New York City in 1952. While attending Howard University, he joined the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and was jailed for his work with Freedom Riders. He moved away from MLK Jr's nonviolence approach to self-defense.

Martin Luther King Jr.

Martin Luther King Jr. was a Baptist minister and social activist who played a key role in the American civil rights movement from the mid-1950s. Inspired by Mahatma Gandhi, King sought equality for African Americans, the economically disadvantaged and victims of injustice through peaceful protest. He was the driving force behind events such as the Montgomery Bus Boycott and the March on Washington, which helped bring about the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. He was assassinated in 1968. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964 and is remembered each year on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Who do I think made the most influential impact?

I think that Martin Luther King Jr. made the biggest influence up to the time he had died. When MLK Jr. was around, people always got along. When MLK Jr. was in a certain town to make a speech or anything else, it was always peaceful. After he died, it almost seemed like total chaos in certain parts of the country.