Andrew Young Essay

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Andrew Young Essay

One of the most influential black politicians in American history, Andrew Young has made countless contributions towards the advancement of civil liberties across the globe. In the third chapter of Andrew J. DeRoche’s biography Andrew Young: Civil Rights Ambassador, he successfully details how Young applied his experience in the Civil Rights Movement to his political career to help achieve peace and promote human rights in the United States and throughout the developing world. DeRoche’s research uses many primary sources such as a personal interview, excerpts from Young’s own autobiography, and direct quotes from speeches he made in Congress, making his study both thorough and reliable. Ultimately, DeRoche’s biography helps to signify the impact Andrew Young made in the broader context of the aftermath of the Civil Rights Movement and United States’ foreign policy in the 1970s.

DeRoche begins chapter three by explaining how Andrew Young decided to immerse himself in the world of politics. In 1968, as the debate over American presence in Vietnam raged, Young led the Poor People’s Campaign which urged politicians to concentrate spending on helping impoverished Americans instead of fighting the North Vietnamese. The following year, Young served as vice-president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, helping to organize marches, boycotts, and demonstrations for civil rights activists. Young quickly realized that the best way for him to promote peace and human rights was to run for Congress himself, and after losing his first election in 1970, he was voted into office two years later. As soon as he was sworn in, Andrew Young made an immediate impact on the progression of human rights, setting a strong precedent for the years to follow. During his tenure as a congressman, Young applied lessons he learned during the Civil Rights Movement “to influence U.S. foreign relations and to advocate peace and racial justice around the...
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