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The Legacy of Martin Luther King

Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King

'I Have a Dream'

From King to Obama

dijous, 3 d'abril de 2008
Tomorrow, 4 April, will be exactly forty years since the assassination of Martin Luther King (1929-1968), a key figure in the civil rights movement in the United States. King led the struggle for the liberation of blacks and for an end to racial segregation that was preventing them from exercising the same rights as those enjoyed by whites.

King based his struggle on the message of non violence advocated by Mahatma Gandhi, who led the independence movement in India. Like Gandhi, King believed the best way to combat injustice was by passive resistance, a method that consists of refusing to take part in certain aspects of public life, without resorting to the use of force.

King was sent to prison for his acts of passive resistance. However, he never became disheartened and managed to involve more and more people who were committed to equal rights for whites and blacks. In 1963, along with 200,000 protestors, he took part in the historic March on Washington in the US capital.

The March on Washington forced to US government to take certain measures. The Civil Rights Act was approved in 1964, which prohibited discrimination in schools, in the workplace and in public spaces; in 1965 the Voting Rights Act gave blacks the right to vote.

Martin Luther King was assassinated in Memphis (Tennessee, USA) by James Earl Ray, a white man who had escaped from prison. King was thirty nine.

Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King

+ Parks' courage lit the flame of the civil rights movement.
The son of a protestant minister and a school teacher, Martin Luther King was born on 15 January 1929 in Atlanta, the capital of the US state of Georgia. He followed in his father's footsteps and, in 1954, became minister of a church in Montgomery (Alabama). The following year, he promoted a campaign to boycott the city's buses after a black woman, Rosa Parks, was arrested for refusing to give up her seat to a white man. Parks' courage lit the flame of the civil rights movement, led by King.

'I Have a Dream'

+ King gave the 'I Have a Dream Speech' on 28 August 1963.
A brilliant orator, King gave his most famous speech on 28 August 1963 to the massively attended March on Washington. The speech, know as the 'I Have a Dream Speech', is an eloquent, emotive and hope-filled hymn for harmony between whites and blacks which called not only for a future that ensured freedom and equal rights for all Americans, but for a future that was based on turning something that was self-evident into reality: that all men are created equal.

From King to Obama

+ The message of Obama has taken root among young people.
Today, nearly half a century after King's speech, a Democratic Party politician has a real chance of becoming the first black president in the history of the United States. His name is Barack Obama (like King, a great orator), who is standing as the standard bearer of a new way of doing politics, based on the interests of ordinary people and not in any way based on the interests of large, politically influential corporations. The message of Obama, who is running against Hillary Clinton for the Democratic Party nomination, has taken root among young people.




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Com apuntar-s'hi


Paraules de Martin Luther King.
Qüestionari sobre el moviment dels drets civils als Estats Units.
Dites de Gandhi, font d'inspiració de King.
Robert F. Kennedy (1925-1968), germà del president Kennedy i defensor destacat de la minoria negra.
I també...
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