Civil Right's

By: Terrian Maxwell

Civil Right's facts

“Jim Crow” laws at the local and state levels barred them from classrooms and bathrooms, from theaters and train cars, from juries and legislatures. In 1954, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the “separate but equal” doctrine that formed the basis for state-sanctioned discrimination, drawing national and international attention to African Americans’ plight. In the turbulent decade and a half that followed, civil rights activists used nonviolent protest and civil disobedience to bring about change, and the federal government made legislative headway with initiatives such as the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the Civil Rights Act of 1968.

Martin Luther King and his involvement with Civil Right's

Martin Luther King, Jr., who emerged as the boycott movement’s most effective leader, possessed unique conciliatory and oratorical skills. He understood the larger significance of the boycott and quickly realized that the nonviolent tactics used by the Indian nationalist Mahatma Gandhi could be used by southern blacks. “I had come to see early that the Christian doctrine of love operating through the Gandhian method of nonviolence was one of the most potent weapons available to the Negro in his struggle for freedom,” he explained. Because large segments of the populace–particularly African-Americans, women, and men without property–have not always been accorded full citizenship rights in the American Republic, civil rights movements, or “freedom struggles,” have been a frequent feature of the nation’s history. In particular, movements to obtain civil rights for black Americans have had special historical significance. Such movements have not only secured citizenship rights for blacks but have also redefined prevailing conceptions of the nature of civil rights and the role of government in protecting these rights.

Black Panthers and there connection with the Civil Right's

By the late 1960s, organizations such as the NAACP, SCLC, andSNCC faced increasingly strong challenges from new militant organizations, such as the Black Panther party. The Panthers’ strategy of “picking up the gun” reflected the sentiments of many inner-city blacks. A series of major “riots” (as the authorities called them), or “rebellions” (the sympathizers’ term), erupted during the last half of the 1960s. Often influenced by the black nationalism of Elijah Muhammad and Malcolm X and by pan-African leaders, proponents of black liberation saw civil rights reforms as insufficient because they did not address the problems faced by millions of poor blacks and because African-American citizenship was derived ultimately from the involuntary circumstances of enslavement. In addition, proponents of racial liberation often saw the African-American freedom struggle in international terms, as a movement for human rights and national self-determination for all peoples.