America, the land of freedom and new opportunities…
Unfortunately, this was not the case for many African-Americans, who had to fight for their deprived rights. The African-Americans, especially in the deep south, fought for what they believed was right in their eyes. In 1867, white supremacy groups such as the Ku Klux Klan started forming and terrorizing the African-American community. The Jim Crow laws were also formed and caused to extreme widespread of corruption and massive amounts of lynchings. Organizations like the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People were formed to stop this racial discrimination.
The American Civil War movement is one of the most important historical events that took place in order to provide the African-Americans with the equal rights, as well as fair treatment. It was a chain of non-violent movements held by massive numbers of people in order to abolish segregation and discrimination from the country. It marked the end of slavery and the beginning of a new hope, a belief that America would accept people for who they truly are and not for the skin that they are born in.
Therefore, the African-American community from the south protested against the anti lynching movements, passed the voting right bill as well as did the abolitionist movement to end racial discrimination and segregation. During 1808, importing slaves into America became illegal, which had now put a stop on the International slave trade. Slavery in the United States was a dark time, during which Black people were considered property of Whites and were not considered equal. They were rather considered to be less than human and were used for hard labour and menial tasks. Slaves in America tried to get freedom to the best of their ability yet they failed every time.
Paranoid chaos came along with the protest and more than 200 innocent slaves had to die a horrifying death. In the north, the abolishment movement had begun by 1833. Free African-Americans, like Frederick Douglass, and many others collaborated with more people who were against slavery, too. They campaigned to put a ban on slavery and slave codes. Using the underground railroad which was basically a network of safe routes.
The violent opposition between the Abolitionists and the North and South caused there to be a Civil war in 1861. To Kill A Mockingbird written by Harper Lee is a story about prejudice and racial discrimination. In this book, a 5 year old girl named Jean Louise or as more commonly referred as “Scout”, Finch and her family have to cope with a town full of discrimination when her father, Atticus Finch defends a black man accused of attacking white woman named Mayella.
The small town has a fixed mentality of slavery, where prejudice and racism are the norm and African-Americans are treated as inferior creatures. Mrs. Dubose shouted and cussed at Scout and her brother Jem, “Not only a Finch waiting on tables but one lawing for n******!”(pg.
135). This clearly demonstrates that the African-Americans were looked down upon and white people who supported them were considered worthless, as well. The people in this story were only a step away from slavery, which is an extreme form of racism. Fortunately, we have evolved past slavery and have a novel as great as this to remind us not to repeat past mistakes and keep us on track.Most of the civil rights movement consisted of non violent protests, boycotts, and speeches as they didn’t believe they could get anywhere with violence. Many famous organisations, such as NAACP were fighting for justice and equality.
Great leaders such as Martin Luther king Jr. helped motivated many others to fight for their rights, but in a non-violent and peaceful manner. In 1917, as many as a whooping 10,000 people from all over New York participated in a silent protest parade held by the NAACP to fight against lynchings, sexual assault, and other violences done against them. The NAACP was unable to get the anti-lynching bill passed by the government, yet their voices and actions made a huge difference.
People became more aware of the injustice done against black people and helped in bringing a decline to the lynching movement. By 1919, the NAACP had more than 300 branches with 90,000 active members. In Harper Lee’s novel , To Kill a Mockingbird, Atticus tried his best efforts to help the innocent Tom Robinson fight the false accusation of sexual assault of a nineteen year old female, named Mayella Ewell. Atticus did not win the case however. But, he was still able to make a difference by telling the townspeople that all men are created equal and one must not be judged by their skin color.
Atticus knew that Tom would not receive a fair trial, but he still tried to the best of his ability to save an innocent person from a false accusation. Atticus mentions that “Just because we were licked a hundred years ago, it doesn’t mean we don’t have to stop trying.” (pg.87). In each of the situations, African-Americans were innocent and were the victims of hate and racism.
The people that treated them this way roamed freely without consequences. Although many people knew of the crimes being committed against blacks, no-one raised their voice to support them, except for a few caucasians that sympathised with the African-Americans.While many protests were in action, the Jim crow laws separated the blacks from the whites under the state law of “Separate but equal” under the 14th amendment. The laws prohibited many African- Americans from going to certain schools, drinking from certain water fountains, etc. During the civil rights movement many historic leaders like Rosa parks began to protest for justice, and for their right. On December 1, 1955, one of the many African-American was coming home from a long day at work.
Segregation played a huge role in where each race was allowed to sit and she had to go sit in the “coloured’ section. At one point of the route, Rosa and the people sitting beside her were confronted by the bus driver and were told to move, so that the white woman could sit. The other passenger agreed however, Rosa did not. Many people said that she was tired therefore, she did not want to give up but she said, ” I was not tired physically… No, the only tired I was, was tired of giving in”. Rosa parks was then put into custody and charged for not giving up her seat.
As a result she had lost her job, was very prone to harassment, yet became known as the ” mother of the civil rights movement”. Even though Rosa Parks was charged for something that was unreasonable, she made a huge difference by empowering and motivating others like to stand up for their rights and demand justice. Historically the Civil rights was a era of struggle and hard work of the African-Americans in order to gain justice and equality. From the hard work of African Americans like Frederick Douglass to non-violent and peace loving citizens like Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks, everyone suffered yet worked together as one to bring equality to the nation of America.
Despite the hardships, after the horrifying 14 years of prejudice, the African- Americans worked together and the civil rights act ended discrimination in employment and vote based upon race and gender. Many writers like Harper Lee and David Lewis brought awareness to people about the struggle they went through join order to earn their rights. Even in today’s world, discrimination still exists. Discrimination is just like a disease, it will keep spreading until there is a stop put towards it.