race and ethnicity

race and ethnicity - Toruno 1 Justin Toruno Professor...

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Toruno 1 Justin Toruno Professor Spivey AMH2097-02.su07 20, July 2007 Word Count - 3,711 Activist Movements in History Throughout history, there are certain events that have occurred that we, as Americans, and even foreigners, still talk about today. These events will forever be imprinted in the history books for hundreds of years to come. Such events deserve to be remembered and passed along from generation to generation. Events such as the Civil Rights Movement led by Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X, The National Farm Workers Association Movement led by Cesar Chavez, and The American Indian Activists Movements. All three of these events and the people who helped lead them have shaped our country in what it is today. Without these very important historical dates, there might as well be another world war going on. Despite all three of these movements occurring, each on a different date, different locations and having different leaders, they all have many similarities that intertwine them and make them seemed as if they happened as a whole. Martin Luther King Jr., was born on January 15, 1929 in Atlanta, Georgia into a very well known, middle class family. King was raised by his mother, Alberta Williams King and his father, Martin Luther King Sr. He attended church on a regular basis and had a good, strong, African American background. King was very well educated and continued his higher education at Morehouse College, a black institute in Atlanta. Other institutions he attended were, Crozer Seminary and then Boston University, where he obtained his Ph.D. in philosophy. As a student King studied, besides the Bible, theories for social change advanced by such
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Toruno 2 thinkers as socialist Karl Marx and Mohandas Gandhi, the Indian independence leader and proponent of nonviolent civil disobedience as a tool for social-political change (Howard 4). At the age of 26, King became a pastor of Dexter Avenue Church in Montgomery, Alabama. This was also the same year Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat to a white person and the bus system was boycotted. The boycott lasted for 382 days and got so intense that King’s house was bombed. Around this period of high tension, King was arrested for parading without a permit in Birmingham, Alabama. While incarcerated, he wrote a letter to a group of eight Caucasian clergy who criticized his actions and thoughts as erroneous and foolish. King states in his letter, “In any nonviolent campaign there are four basic steps: collection of the facts to determine whether injustices exist; negotiation; self-purification; and direct action” (Howard 76). King was only interested in a nonviolent form of protest; never did he lead by using violence. He used this form of protest because, “The purpose of our direct-action program is to create a
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race and ethnicity - Toruno 1 Justin Toruno Professor...

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