Letter From A Birmingham Jail, By Martin Luther King Jr.

Pages: 4 (827 words) Published: September 12, 2015


Martin Luther King Jr. was a civil rights activist who stood strong in advocating justice and equality. King believed in nonviolent civil disobedience and wanted to bring an end to the constant racial segregation faced by the blacks in Birmingham, Alabama. In April 1963, while protesting for struggled equality of the blacks in Birmingham, King and the other protestors were arrested and jailed. While serving his jail term, King wrote “Letter from a Birmingham Jail” as a retort to the moderate, white clergymen. He impassionedly responded to the eight white religious leaders who critique King and wanted him to end his intended demonstrations and purposes.

This political document had effectively reflected King’s leadership and exceptional communication...

Lamentably, the seeds of racism are so profoundly rooted in the white people by and large. They see themselves as the “superior” and as a matter of fact, they sometimes seem to be heedless of their own racism. (Haley and Malcolm X 1965, 225) In this letter, King questioned the white clergymen beliefs on whether are they supposedly carrying out their duty “to help whoever wants to be helped.” (LASCapstone 2012) As a clergyman himself, King knew the proper ropes in communicating persuasively to address the eight white clergymen. He wanted them to realise that he, too, is bearing the responsibility in aiding his fellow brothers to the supreme life they have always wanted. As King stated himself, “We will reach the goal of freedom in Birmingham and all over the nation, because the goal of America is freedom. Abused and scorned though we may be, our destiny is tied up with America's destiny.” (Letter from a Birmingham Jail 1963) For that reason, he made use of theological strategies to achieve his ends. He made references to some political and religious philosophers like Thomas Jefferson and Jesus in his arguments. King wanted to call upon a sense of hypocrisy in those white moderates as he knew there would no probability of refutation. This effective approach managed to put King in a positive light as he is seen as someone who was willing to try and make a change to the people’s beliefs. This time period had especially took a toll on the blacks as there was a widespread of oppression in the United States since most of its people’s morals and values were poisoned by...
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