Social Media Activism In The Civil Rights Movement

953 Words4 Pages
The Civil Rights movement in the U.S. during the 1950’s and 60’s showed how effective activism is on political issues. Under the leadership of major civil figures, most notably Dr. Martin Luther King, the organized and peaceful movement brought about major change to the civil rights of African Americans and other minorities. Moreover, this movement made historical strides in changing U.S. policy, and did so without the use of social media. Today, social media activism is merely a means to an end. Social media can share a vast amount of information, and raise awareness on a broad spectrum of issues. However, the ability to make major changes on government policy, as proven by many occurrences in history, requires high-risk activism under an organized hierarchy. I argue that social media is not an effective tool for political actions because it lacks the necessary traits to make an effective impact. One of the major traits social media activism lacks is a structured hierarchy. An organization with a chain of command, is organized, and has procedures for carrying out its agenda. Leadership is centralized, and decides the focus and mission of the group. Malcom Gladwell, a writer for the New Yorker, expresses that organizations with a hierarchy are more effective. He states in an article called “Small Change” that “Al Qaeda was most dangerous when it was a unified hierarchy. Now that it has dissipated into a network, it has proved far less effective” (22). I agree with Gladwell,
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