To What Extent Was the Contribution of Martin Luther King Central to the Success of the Civil Rights Movement Essay

The first major event of King’s civil rights calling was the Montgomery Bus Boycott. On December 5. 1955. five yearss after Montgomery civil rights militant Rosa Parks refused to obey the city’s regulations mandating segregation on coachs. black occupants launched a coach boycott and elected King as president of the newly-formed Montgomery Improvement Association.

As the boycott continued during 1956. King gained national prominence as a consequence of his exceeding oratorical accomplishments and personal bravery. His house was bombed and he was convicted along with other boycott leaders on charges of cabaling to interfere with the coach company’s operations. Despite these efforts to stamp down the motion. Montgomery coach were desegregated in December. 1956. after the United States Supreme Court declared Alabama’s segregation Torahs unconstitutional.

There can be no uncertainty that Martin Luther King was indispensable in giving the motion mass entreaty. He gave it the magnetic front man that it lacked until that phase and he helped travel it out of the courtroom and the control of the NAACP onto the streets. His personal appeal helped force the Montgomery Bus boycott into the public oculus and maintain it at that place. In 1957. seeking to construct upon the success of the Montgomery boycott motion. King and other southern black curates founded the Southern Christian Leadership Conference ( SCLC ) .

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Under the leading of Martin Luther King from 1957-1968 the SCLC became a extremely publicised and popular administration in the battle for racial justness. It was a southern motion and was based on the black church. The SCLC hence differed greatly organize the NAACP. which was northern. secular and regarded as excessively influenced by white members. Although progressively portrayed as the pre-eminent black interpreter. King did non mobilise mass protest activity during the first five old ages after the Montgomery boycott ended.

While King moved carefully. southern black college pupils took the enterprise. establishing a moving ridge of sit-in protests during the winter and spring of 1960. King sympathized with the pupil motion and radius at the establishing meeting of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee ( SNCC ) in April 1960. but he shortly became the mark of unfavorable judgments from SNCC militants determined to asseverate their independency. Even King’s determination in October. 1960. to fall in a pupil sit-in in Atlanta did non still the tensenesss. although presidential campaigner John F.

Kennedy’s sympathetic telephone call to King’s married woman. Coretta Scott King. helped pull important black support for Kennedy’s successful run. The 1961 “Freedom Rides. ” which sought to incorporate southern transit installations. demonstrated that neither King nor Kennedy could command the spread outing protest motion spearheaded by pupils. The Freedom Rides achieved the end it set out to carry through. At the petition of Attorney General. Robert Kennedy. all coach segregation was outlawed. much more forcefully than the old Supreme Court opinion.

King can non accept full recognition for this run. but he is due the recognition where it is deserved. Although he did non originate the Freedom Rides. nor take portion instantly after they began. he did raise full consciousness of the cause and successfully united all the civil rights leaders together. By this point in King’s history it is clear that he had learned how to utilize the media to his advantage. an priceless accomplishment. Many of Kings critics nevertheless have stated that his engagement in the protest was really minimum. and his chief purpose of fall ining the motion was to advance the SCLC.

Conflicts between King and younger activists were besides apparent when both SCLC and SNCC assisted the Albany ( Georgia ) Movement’s run of mass protests during December of 1961 and the summer of 1962. Shortly after the failed civil rights run in Albany. King began one his largest civil rights motions yet. After accomplishing really few of his aims in Albany. King recognized the demand to form a successful protest run free of struggles with SNCC. During the spring of 1963. he and his staff guided mass presentations in Birmingham. Alabama. where local white constabulary functionaries were known from their anti-black attitudes.

Clangs between black demonstrators and constabularies utilizing police Canis familiariss and fire hosieries generated newspaper headlines through the universe. In June. President Kennedy reacted to the Birmingham protests and the stubbornness of segregationist Alabama Governor George Wallace by holding to subject wide civil rights statute law to Congress ( which finally passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964 ) . Subsequent mass presentations in many communities culminated in a March on August 28. 1963. that attracted more than 250. 000 dissenters to Washington. D. C.

Addressing the marchers from the stairss of the Lincoln Memorial. King delivered his celebrated “I Have a Dream” oration. During the twelvemonth following the March. King’s renown grew as he became Time magazine’s Man of the Year and. in December 1964. the receiver of the Nobel Peace Prize. Despite celebrity and awards. nevertheless. King faced many challenges to his leading. Malcolm X’s ( 1927-1965 ) message of self-defense and black patriotism expressed the discontent and choler of northern. urban inkinesss more efficaciously than did King’s moderateness.

During the 1965 Selma to Montgomery March. King and his lieutenants were able to maintain intra-movement struggles sufficiently under control to convey about transition of the 1965 Voting Rights Act. but while take parting in a 1966 March through Mississippi. King encountered strong unfavorable judgment from “Black Power” advocate Stokely Carmichael. Shortly afterward white counter-protesters in the Chicago country physically assaulted King in the Chicago country during an unsuccessful attempt to reassign non-violent protest techniques to the urban North.

Despite these leading struggles. King remained committed to the usage of non-violent techniques. Early in 1968. he initiated a Poor Peoples run designed to face economic jobs that had non been addressed by early civil rights reforms. King’s effectivity in accomplishing his aims was limited non simply by divisions among inkinesss. nevertheless. but besides by the increasing opposition he encountered from national political leaders. Besides although King was seen as a leader among a bulk of the black community it has been argued that he did non do the extremist actions by himself.

This point ties in with an statement put frontward by Vivien Saunders ; who states. “As in Montgomery. King was led instead than leading” . The thought that King was non a unequivocal leader and could frequently take advice from foreigners poses the inquiry of how effectual King was as a leader. In add-on to this it suggests that his attempt towards the runs were in fact weak. After his decease. King has remained a controversial symbol of the African-American civil rights battle. revered by many for his martyrdom on behalf of non-violence and condemned by others for his combativeness and seditious positions.


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