The Civil Rights Movement

Topics: Lyndon B. Johnson, Affirmative action, Civil rights and liberties Pages: 4 (1438 words) Published: October 8, 1999
The Civil Rights Movement

The civil rights movement was a period of time when blacks attempted to gain their constitutional rights of which they were being deprived. The movement has occurred from the 1950's to the present, with programs like Affirmative Action. Many were upset with the way the civil rights movement was being carried out in the 1960's. As a result, someone assassinated the leader of the movement, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Many blacks were infuriated at this death so there were serious riots in almost 100 cities. President Johnson then appointed a committee called The Kerner Commission to study the civil rights movement. They concluded the following: "We are moving toward two societies-one white and one black, separate and unequal." There is some truth to the Kerner Commission report, but on the whole the civil rights movement has been a success because blacks are better off now than they were before it began.

The Kerner Commission report has some truth when it comes to blacks and politics, but overall the movement was a success because blacks have achieved more politically than before they began. Before the movement, blacks had almost no political power due to laws designed to prevent blacks from voting, like poll taxes, literacy tests and the Grandfather Clause. Also when some blacks went to vote, people simply wouldn't let them register. Due to lack of voting ability, no blacks were elected into office and therefore, blacks had no say in the government. Also, blacks were not allowed to serve on juries, yet they were almost always found guilty in court, even if the evidence was clearly against them. For example, years ago a boy in Georgia broke into a school to steal an ice cream. While he should have gotten a few hours of community service, he got three years in jail just because he was black. A truth to the Kerner Commission report that occurs today is that blacks are not being represented in Congress proportionally. While 12% of U.S....
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