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The following study text will evaluate King’s role in the Civil Rights Movement with regards to his unique and effective strategies applied in acquiring overwhelming victory against white supremacy.
Born in January 1929 as Michael Luther King, King grew up in religious environment and both his father and grandfather were pastors at the Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta. In 1948, he earned a B.A. at the Morehouse College and proceeded to the Crozer Theological Seminary in 1951. In 1955, he earned a doctorate from the Boston University where he also happened to meet his wife Coretta Scott. After his graduation from Boston University, he began his pastoral role as at the Montgomery Avenue Baptist Church. This is where his journey into world history began. Rosa Sparks, a young black woman refused to give up her seat for a white person to sit in a bus and this had sparked controversy all over the United States around 1955. By chance, King’s Montgomery Church was chosen as the meeting venue to host one of the meetings to discuss the matter, and King happened to be there1. The meeting acted to recruit King into his call of advocating for the end to racial discrimination in the United States.
Rosa Sparks was thrown into jail and King could not stomach the sense that she had been jailed for failing to give her seat to a white person. Following this, he planned his first public demonstration. In the same year, he mobilized the entire Montgomery [mainly African American] community to boycott the city’s transport service. He demanded equal rights for all. After an unending one year of boycott, a court ruling in Browder V. Gayle put an end to the discrimination on the public bus service and everyone was free to board the buses. This did not end, but sparked a new struggle aimed at eradicating racism all over the United States2. Martin Luther King Jr. was
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Emotions are like the recurring storms and every storm leaves behind it, devastation in different degrees. Is it possible to find an authentic solution, viewed from all angles, to the problem of racism in America? The pages of American history daubed in bloodshed in the name of ethnicity and color asks the crying question.
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