March 3, 2000
Militant and Violent Acts of the Civil Rights Movement and Black Nationalism
The rights of African-Americans have been violated since they were brought over to America as slaves in the late 1600's to the land of the free. Great political gains for African-Americans were made in the 1960's such as the right to vote without paying. Still, many African Americans were dissatisfied with their economic situation, so they reacted with violence in the form of riots. Other African-Americans became frustrated with the system of "white" America; hence they turned to militant organizations that stressed black power. Many people believe that violence or militant actions solve their problems, but in reality the results of these actions create problems rather than eradicate them. African-Americans' rights continue to be violated, although not as overtly since the gains made in the 1960's under the leadership of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. King was an advocate of civil disobedience or using non-violent means to persuade America to give African-Americans their due rights. King sought to fully integrate African-Americans into white society. King was often at odds with the young people within the civil rights movement who wanted to use more aggressive means to advance the cause. Out of respect for Dr. King they held their peace, and "each time the black people saw Dr. Martin Luther King get slapped they became angry. When they saw little black girls bombed to death in a church and civil rights workers ambushed and murdered, they were angrier; and when nothing happened, they were steaming mad"(Carmichael par. 2). Dr. King's death deprived the civil rights movement of a leader who was successful in combating the idea that violence was needed to achieve change.
With the violent response that African-Americans received for their peaceful and non-violent demonstrations, some leaders decided that it was time to fight back. According to the...