Civil Rights Movement, Its Leaders and Impact


It should be noted that the Civil Rights Movement is one of the most critical events in the modern history of the USA. Importantly, many people have influenced the course of these events, and the outcomes are perceived at present. The purpose of this paper is to review the aspects of the Movement and to analyze them.

Leaders

The first person who contributed to the Civil Rights Movement in Selma is Ella Baker. Importantly, Ella Baker promoted radical democracy and collaborated with other influential activists. The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) was established with great help from her side. It was an organization, which united young people in their fight for ideology1 SNCC was an independent organization that proposed its projects and strategies, and it was Ella Baker who encouraged students to become active initiators of change in the early years of the Movement.

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Julian Bond is another individual who had a great impact on the course of the Civil Rights Movement. He was a human rights activist and fought against racial segregation and extremism that were motivated by racial hatred. He opposed the idea of the superiority of the white race over the other races and nationalities. Julian Bond participated in protests against racism and was the leader of the activists who wanted to put an end to discrimination in connection with the fact that it did not meet the ideals and principles that could define America as a country.2 Also, he was among those people who helped in founding SNCC and promoted an idea that American history was whitewashed.

Rosa Parks is the third person who influenced the development of American history at that time. In particular, the courage of this woman had changed the future of the entire nation. Her conduct had an immense impact on the Civil Rights Movement because her refusal to obey and give her seat to a white woman subsequently led to the abolition of racial segregation in the southern United States and marked the beginning of a new era in the struggle for civil rights.3 Also, at that time, the black population already had a strong organization for fighting for the rights, and it was ready for civilized mass protests. Therefore, the decision of Rosa Parks gave impetus for the further proactive actions of the population.

Lessons and Understanding

It is significant to emphasize that the boycott of the Montgomery bus lines marked the willingness and determination of African-American people to fight for their rights, freedoms, and security. For decades, African-Americans have experienced oppression and deprivation from both the state and the population. Despite the policy, which the government was promoting, the people were not ready for radical changes, and this population group had to strive for equality. After the first victory was won against the injustice, the activities and perceptions of this population group have changed considerably since the people were no longer afraid of arrests and the possibility to become unemployed and they began to rally to assert their rights..4 Thus, the struggle for civil rights was a triumph of American democracy.

Moreover, the impact of the youth movement and its participants was of great importance for future generations. The active position of students and their participation in political affairs had allowed them to initiate a change in the social status of African-Americans as well. Also, the most important conclusion is that the Civil Rights Movement had tremendous historical significance for society and the harmonious development of the entire country. After African-Americans had gained their civil rights, it has allowed them to integrate into a society that had no racial prejudice. In 1964, segregation by race was officially over, as well as discrimination based on nationality and gender.5 Even though the United States has a long way to building a harmonious and prejudice-free society, the Movement has served as the most crucial starting point for it.

Impact and Conclusions

The issue of injustice about the African-American population has its roots in the past when slavery was abolished. Even though the legislation outlined the freedom, the government did not take any practical steps to implement its policies. The processes that began in the 20th century hit the most vulnerable people, which led to the intensification of their struggle for the rights.6 Even though the Movement has been uneven, and the uprisings had spontaneous character, the leaders such as Dr. Martin Luther King and Malcolm X have formed these revolts in a systematic process of struggle for the equality.

The most important impact the leaders and the Movement made is the unification of people. In that matter, it was insignificant from the standpoint of the state, but it was crucial for the American people since the Movement made Americans a stronger nation. Apart from that, after the Movement, people started valuing and promoting diversity and the events taking place at that time contributed greatly to the diversity that America has at present. Further on, these events evidenced the capability of people to influence such aspects of life that were wrong in their core since the people were able to unite to fix the existing inequality within the state.

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Bibliography

Lewis, John. Across that Bridge. New York: Hachette Books, 2012.

Lewis, John and Michael D’Orso. Walking with the Wind. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1998.

Morrison-Reed, Mark. The Selma Awakening. Boston: Skinner House Books, 2014.

Footnotes

1. John Lewis and Michael D’Orso, Walking with the Wind (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1998), 180.

2. Ibid., 118.

3.. Ibid., 48.

4. John Lewi, Across that Bridge (New York: Hachette Books, 2012), 54.

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Civil Rights Movement, Its Leaders and Impact
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5. Mark Morrison-Reed, The Selma Awakening (Boston: Skinner House Books, 2014), 15.

6.. John Lewi, Across that Bridge (New York: Hachette Books, 2012), 102.

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