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Martin Luther Essay

1125 words - 5 pages

Martin Luther King Jr, was born at noon Tuesday, January 15 1929 at his home in Atlanta, Georgia. He was the first son and second child born to the reverend Martin Luther King Sr and Alberta Williams King a school teacher. Martin began his schooling at the all black Younge Street Elementary in Atlanta. He experienced an extremely rough childhood and witnessed things such as police brutality of the worst kind ;watching black people ‘negroes’ receive injustices in courts.(Martin Luther King pg 90).The things he saw and experienced were eventually what caused him to strive for African American freedom and despise segregation. “I had grown up abhorring not only segregation but also the ...view middle of the document...

Thoreau lived in United States under the British rule and he believed in not only following the government rules which he did not believe in. He too used nonviolent tactics to get his point across and was not afraid to be arrested for his crimes. Thoreau’s ‘Essay on civil disobedience’ was what got King fully interested in his beliefs. King read the essay and was fascinated by the idea of refusing to cooperate with an evil system. “I was deeply moved and reread the work several times and I was convinced that his mind frame was in the right place.” (Martin Luther King pg 91)
Christ, Gandhi and Thoreau were the three people who influenced King’s thoughts and ideas throughout the civil rights movement. After Kings’study was complete he set out to become a leader in the civil rights movement and the first thing that put King’s name in the books was The Montgomery Bus Boycott. It all started when Ms Rosa Parks refused to abide by the segregation rule that African Americans were unable to sit anywhere but the back of the bus in Montgomery, Alabama. She was arrested for not obeying the bus driver when he told her to move to the back of the bus. Upon hearing news of the arrest King and two other men organized a boycott of the Montgomery bus system. The men knew the African American population made up much of the organization’s revenue and if they could organize the black population in a manner that would convince them not to travel on buses they could get what they were fighting for. Both men began fighting against a law they believed was unjust and did not wish to abide by it any longer. “At this point I began to think about Thoreau’s Essay on Civil Disobedience’…..I became convinced that what we were preparing to do in Montgomery was related to what Thoreau had expressed. We were simply saying to the white community, we can no longer lend our cooperation to an evil system.” (Martin Luther King pg 51). In dealing with the boycott, Martin referred to Gandhi’s ‘salt margin’ against the British Government and how it worked for them. “Whenever our people had any doubts Martin would speak of the ‘salt margin’ and try to convince everyone to keep fighting.” (Coretta Scott King pg 56).
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