Pilgrimage to nonviolence essay


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King aroused controversy throughout his tumultuous public career. Kennedy were concerned that he would provoke disorder, and Attorney General Robert F.


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FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover warned that King was consorting with communists. FBI bugging failed to provide any evidence that King was involved with a communist conspiracy, but it did reveal his extensive womanizing. This has deeply embarrassed civil rights leaders. Many people were further scandalized by the revelation that phrases, sentences and some paragraphs in his book Stride Toward Freedom had been lifted from Basic Christian Ethics by Paul Ramsay and Agape and Eros by Anders Nygren.

King, it seems, had flaws like many other people. Moreover, Dr. King had some very muddled ideas. Exasperated by the intransigence of state and local governments, he pleaded for federal intervention to enforce equal rights, and apparently he came to believe that federal power could cure poverty. One biographer claimed he was a closet socialist.

Yet he protested many laws. Some laws denied blacks access to government services for which they were forced to pay taxes. There were state and local laws mandating private sector segregation. When Dr. King helped lead a bus boycott, the boycotters were hit with penalties provided by anti-boycott laws.

Carpools were organized to help boycotters get to work, and they were prosecuted for violating laws which required that carpool vehicles be licensed as taxis and that riders be charged government-mandated minimum fares. King tangled with police and tax collectors. He considered military conscription a form of slavery.

If you succumb to the temptation of using violence in your struggle, unborn generations will be the recipients of a long and desolate night of bitterness, and your chief legacy to the future will be an endless reign of meaningless chaos…In your struggle for justice, let your oppressor know that you are not attempting to defeat or humiliate him…you are merely seeking justice for him as well as yourself. At 12, he entered an oratorical contest sponsored by the black Elks. Martin followed his father by attending Morehouse College, the favored institution of higher education for middle class blacks.

He decided on the ministry around the age of 19, entering Crozer Theological Seminary, Chester, Pennsylvania, for a three-year program.

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The couple returned to Boston, and he earned his Ph. King cherished his independence. In August , Dr. King spoke at a meeting of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, and he was subsequently asked to serve on their executive committee. Meanwhile, trouble was brewing over government-enforced racial segregation. The laws had been passed during the early 20 th century, despite the objections of private businesses that such laws would raise their costs and alienate customers. Prejudice is free but discrimination has costs.

The mania for separation went to such lengths that Oklahoma required separate telephone booths for the two races…Macon County, Georgia, took the prize for absurdity by seriously debating a proposal that the county maintain two separate sets of public roads, one for each race, and rejecting the idea only because of the prohibitive cost. A Montgomery ordinance required that blacks give up their seats when whites needed seats. In many cases, blacks — especially women — were told to pay their fare at the front of the bus, then leave the bus and re-enter at the back door, only to see the bus drive away.

Driver J. Blake ordered blacks to the back of the bus, but Parks refused. She was tired. Blake stopped the bus, went to a telephone and called the police. They escorted Parks to jail. A woman on the bus got word to E. Nixon, accompanied by white attorney Clifford Dorr, signed bond papers and secured the release of Mrs. Nixon lined up the support of black ministers.

They formed the Montgomery Improvement Association and chose Dr. King as the first president, because his education and public speaking ability would appeal to sophisticated blacks as well as ordinary folks. All we are seeking is justice and fair treatment in riding the buses. Montgomery mayor W.


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The Montgomery Improvement Association set up a volunteer carpool for getting boycotters to work. City officials threatened to arrest drivers if they charged bus boycotters less than the government-mandated minimum cent taxi fare. State Judge Eugene W. A grand jury indicted more than 90 MIA members for violating the state anti-boycott law.

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A bomb exploded in front of the parsonage where Dr. In weekly mass meetings, Dr. In June , a federal court voted to strike down the Montgomery bus segregation ordinance, and later that year the U. Supreme Court upheld this decision. On December 21, , at AM, the first bus of the day stopped near Dr.

Militant Nonviolence: A Biography of Martin Luther King, Jr.

He was the first one on board, accompanied by Ralph Abernathy, E. Things seemed to go well until December 23rd when a shotgun blasted through Dr. Five days later, snipers shot at three desegregated buses. One black rider was wounded. On January 27, , twelve sticks of dynamite with a burned-out fuse were found on the porch of Dr.

It missed his heart by a fraction of an inch. To promote a broader civil rights movement, Dr. Ebony magazine rated Dr. On Labor Day , Dr. Woolworth whites-only lunch counter. Denied service, the students refused to leave.

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Pilgrimage to Nonviolence | Stride Toward Freedom Wikipedia | GradeSaver

Dozens more students showed up, and the lunch counter closed. King, who by this time had resigned from Dexter and become co-pastor with Daddy King at Ebenezer Baptist Church, addressed a rally of sit-in demonstrators in Durham, North Carolina. Then two sheriffs arrested him and sought his extradition to Alabama where he faced charges of perjury and felony for his Alabama state tax returns.

I had also learned that the inseparable twin of racial injustice is economic injustice. I saw how the systems of segregation ended up in the exploitation of the Negro as well as the poor whites. Through these early experiences I grew up deeply conscious of the varieties of injustice in our society. Not until I entered theological seminary, however, did I begin a serious intellectual quest for a method to eliminate social evil. I was immediately influenced by the social gospel.

In the early '50s I read Walter Rauschenbusch's Christianity and the Social Crisis , a book which left an indelible imprint on my thinking. Of course there were points at which I differed with Rauschenbusch. I felt that he had fallen victim to the 19th-century "cult of inevitable progress," which led him to an unwarranted optimism concerning human nature.

Moreover, he came perilously close to identifying the kingdom of God with a particular social and economic system—a temptation which the church should never give in to. But in spite of these shortcomings Rauschenbusch gave to American Protestantism a sense of social responsibility that it should never lose. The gospel at its best deals with the whole man—not only his soul but his body, not only his spiritual well-being but his material well-being.

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pilgrimage to nonviolence essay Pilgrimage to nonviolence essay
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