Malcolm X Essay

1670 Words7 Pages
Malcolm X

Martin Luther King, Rosa Parks, and Andrew Goodman. These people are well known for their positive role in the civil rights movement of the 1960’s, but what about the familiar name Malcolm X? He is sometimes shamed for the ways he went about trying to fix the way African Americans were being treated because he did so in a violent fashion instead of peacefully, but many people do not know the full story of Malcolm X. Malcolm X was a very important civil rights leader.
Malcolm X was born Malcolm Little to Earl and Louise Little on May 19, 1925, in Omaha, Nebraska (Global). He grew up with 9 siblings. Malcolm Little’s family had many struggles when he was a kid. His father had had three of his brothers killed by the KKK already,
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The Nation of Islam had about 400 members when Malcolm X joined them in 1952. By 1960, because of how influential Malcolm X had been to the African American community, the group had about 40,000 members (Letter). One of these new members was Cassius Clay, who then changed his name to Muhammad Ali. Malcolm X befriended him and ministered him as he converted to Islam. He reached out to the African American community to use violence to get their rights that they deserved. One of his most famous quotes was when he said, “You don’t have a peaceful revolution. You don’t have a turn the cheek revolution. There’s no such thing as a violent revolution” (Malcolm). Malcolm X looked at rights for black people as a revolution rather than as just a movement. This really caused him to have many followers, but also many critics. The most notable of these critics was Martin Luther King Jr. who said that Malcolm X was only a “potentially great leader”(Global). Malcolm X was able to get so many people to join his cause, but he was doing it in the wrong way. He was using violence to get rights for blacks instead of trying to use non-violent methods to develop change. Malcolm X thought that this was the only option at the time, but he was not correct. Martin Luther King Jr. had been successfully using nonviolent protests to promote major change in black rights for the better in the same time period as

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