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Unformatted text preview: H E A FRICA N PRESENCE IN THE UNITED STATES BEGAN almost simultaneously with permanent White settlement. Unlike most Europeans, however, the African people were brought invol- untarily and in bondage. The end of slavery heralded new political rights dur- ing Reconstruction, but this was a short-lived era of dignity. Despite advocacy of nonviolence by leaders such as the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr., the civil rights movement met violent resistance throughout the South. In the mid-1960s, the nation's attention was diverted to urban violence in the North and the West. Blacks responded to their relative deprivation and rising expectations by advo- cating Black Power, which in turn met with W hite resistance. A lthough A frican Americans have made significant gains, the gap between Blacks and Whites remains remark- y unchanged in the last century. Religion contin- ues.to be a major force in the African American community. I he n RESEARl II [0( LS Cloulown L I ISH-N TO UlR VOICES "I crier Irm o R h mingham A K arlin I tither king, r. 1.1111,14c. inn- n i l . 41 1 1 m ik ir i L u m i , J r F i A . n , 2 . ! t t ” HIGHLIGHTS Chapter 7 The M aking of African Amernans in a White Americo 20 he Gee's Bend Ferry resumed service crossing the Alabama River in 2006. This is especially noteworthy because, it represented the end of several decades of keeping Blacks from voting in Camden, Alabama. In 1962, as Blacks began to vote in larger numbers, ending the ferry servile meant a key concentration of 700 African American citizens would have to travel an hour rather than 15 minutes to get to the county seat to register to vote. In 2003, the City Council of Zephyrhills, a community of 11,000 people 35 miles northeast of Tampa, Florida, voted to rename a street in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. I n taking this step they joined company with about 650 other cities in 41 states that have renamed streets in honor of the civil rights worker. Although a few responded to the creation of Martin Luther King, Jr. Avenue with pleasure. the city council was unprepared for the strong protest that accompanied its decision. Protesters became more vocal over the action, with critics saving they did not want to have to change their address. Ob- servers noticed that all the townspeople who spoke against the policy were White, and most of the supporters were African American. In May the council reversed it- self and King Avenue again became Sixth Avenue. This is not the story of just one town, because this has occurred again and again. Efforts to recognize significant fig- ures in African American history have often been controversial. The people of San Diego were so incensed about renaming a street after Martin Luther King, Jr., that they successfully got the issue on the ballot in 1987 and had the former name re- stored. More recently in 2003, the people of Muncie, Indiana. defeated the idea of renaming a street after the slain civil rights leader, and similarly in Portsmouth, New...
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This note was uploaded on 02/22/2011 for the course AFPRL 103 taught by Professor Melendez during the Spring '11 term at CUNY Hunter.
- Spring '11