Last Updated 15 Apr 2020

Leaders of the Civil Rights Movement

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In Martin Luther King‘s speech he speaks with such passion and determination, you can tell in his voice that he means everything he says and his hope reaches out to people and the way he emphases his words captures the audience’s attention. He believed that every person should be equal despite their skin color. In Malcolm X's speech he talks more about himself and he thought it would be best for everyone to keep their religion to themselves. He believed that the black people were trapped by the white people.

He thought of white people as the enemy and he mostly spoke negatively about them. He made jokes throughout his speech and to me he didn’t sound at serious as Martin Luther. For example Martin said “Violence as a way of achieving racial justice is both impractical and immoral. It is impractical because it is a descending spiral ending in destruction for all. It is immoral because it seeks to humiliate the opponent rather than win his understanding; it seeks to annihilate rather than to convert. Violence is immoral because it thrives on hatred rather than love. As opposed to Malcolm X, who stated in his speech “There is nothing in our book, the Koran, which teaches us to suffer peacefully. Our religion teaches us to be intelligent. Be peaceful, be courteous, obey the law, respect everyone; but if someone puts his hand on you, send him to the cemetery. That's a good religion. ” Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. wanted a more peaceful approach. He hoped that with sit-ins and peace marches to appeal to the ideals of dignity and justice in the white people of the time.

To show them the wrong they were doing so that they would want to correct it in themselves out of their own personal honor. Malcolm X on the other hand believed that white people would never give up their power, at least early on in his career as a civil rights leader. He believed they would only give it up if forced to do so, and that meant through militant means. He eventually give this idea up in favor of more peaceful means after finding white Muslims who treated him and other black men as brothers; and black men who treated white people as brothers as well.

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And with this he began to realize that they could live in peace, and so he switched to a more peaceful style in his protests in the end. Personally, I believe that Martin Luther’s approach to gaining equality among people worked best. When taking a forceful approach, such as Malcolm X’s you take a risk that your enemy will not fear you but that they could possibly fight back and over power you. This could possibly be said for a peaceful approach as well but it’s less likely.

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