Describe the significance of Martin Luther King Junior’s Letter from Birmingham Jail and his I have a Dream speech.

MLK’s Letter from Birmingham Jail was written April 16, 1963. The purpose of this was to defend his strategy of non-violent protest to racism in order to achieve change. One of MLK’s main mentors, someone that he followed their beliefs, was Gandhi whom believed in non-violent protest and whom it worked for which he used to back up his opinion that non-violent protest was the best way to achieve change. He wrote this speech to all people working to achieve change in order to tell them not to lose hope on his method of non-violence and that it would prevail. After this letter, Martin Luther King Jr. gave one of the most famous speeches of all time, his “I have a dream” speech during the March on Washington that was a non-violent protest that he organized. The objective of the March on Washington was to achieve mass support for the civil rights movement, and it was seen to work as blacks and other minorities soon were able to achieve higher levels of equality, and it is one of the best remembered organized events of all time. His speech specifically, was to the American people and it had a message of equality and how beautiful the world would look with equality. Malcolm X unlike MLK encouraged action and said action needed to be taken to get our rights back. Many blacks could see his vision more clearly because his seemed more immigrant and easier to accomplish. Like Malcolm X but even more extreme the Black Panther society believed in black supremacy and that the only way to get rights back was to use violence.

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Motivational leaders like Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X were the backbone behind the civil rights movement and provided martyrs for the movement. I believe that without their contributions it would be impossible for the United States to accept racial equality. They preached non-violence, and action, two methods that can be looked at as different approaches to equal rights. No matter the approach someone took the ability for people to get behind a person and their ideals on Civil Rights was huge as it allowed people to start organizing and discussing ideas talked about by their idols in the movement. The public protests organized by Martin Luther King Junior, especially the March on Washington, were televised and helped to show every American the important of the Civil Rights Movement, allowing it to spread better.



“A right delayed is a right denied”- MLK


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