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Goals and Strategies of the Civil Rights Movement

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Goals and Strategies of the Civil Rights Movement

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  • April 22, 2008
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African-American Civil Rights Movement

Throughout the 1960’s, the widespread movement for African American civil rights had transformed in terms of its goals and strategies. The campaign had intensified in this decade, characterized by greater demands and more aggressive efforts. Although the support of the Civil Rights movement was relatively constant, the goals of the movement became more high-reaching and specific, and its strategies became less compromising. African Americans’ struggle for equality during the 1960’s was a relentless movement that used change for progress. In essence, the transformation of the Civil Rights Movement throughout the 1960’s forwarded the evolution of America into a nation of civil equality and freedom.

In the late 1950’s – early 1960’s, the Civil Rights Movement was a peaceful, relatively low-key fight for equal rights. The movement had moderate goals, and generally did not aim to overcome prejudice in a swift and aggressive manner. At the start of the movement, many African Americans were outraged with the clear ineffectiveness of President Eisenhower’s Civil Rights Act of 1957. This political action intended to provide suffrage for blacks in Southern states; however, with the prevalent racism in the South, it was ignored. In response, black leader Martin Luther King Jr. would often deliver idealistic speeches about the triumphs blacks could achieve politically, socially, and economically. This is evident in Dr. King’s famed “I Have a Dream Speech,” which he made in 1963. As indicated by its title, the speech merely stirred the souls of countless blacks for no particular political action or specific demand. This is evident in one of the most famous lines from the speech, “I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, and every hill and mountain shall be made low; the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight; and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall...