The Individual's Role In The Civil Rights Movement

Decent Essays
Mahatma Gandhi once said, "Civil disobedience is not only the natural right of a people, especially when they have no effective voice in their own Government, but that it is also a substitute for violence or armed rebellion." US democracy may have begun with an arm rebellion, however, the precursors were the acts of brave citizens engaging their government protesting taxation without representation. This act of civil disobedience is one way that citizens interact with their government to punctuate necessary change within a democracy. As the Preamble of the United States Constitution decrees, "We the People..." and it is the people's active participation which tells the importance of the role of the individual in a democratic society. This…show more content…
Looking back at the civil rights movement one can only infer that had Rosa Parks not shown overt resistance to the racial segregation of public buses sparking the birth of the movement then the stride for racial equality may not have come to fruition. Maybe the Supreme Court would not have found public bus racial segregation unconstitutional in 1956. Maybe it would have been found unconstitutional in 1998 or maybe 2005 or maybe even in 2017. Without Parks' and other leaders' peaceful resistance the government would have allowed the racial oppression of African Americans to continue and possibly increase. Similarly, the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) had the role of the Freedom Riders and were instrumental in the Supreme Court decision. In pursuit of the destruction of Jim Crow laws and racial oppression as a whole, the SNCC organized sit-ins of businesses. They had food poured on them and were disrespected every day that they sat. However, their perseverance allowed people to realize that racial discrimination throughout society was wrong. The civil rights brought about the ability for the country to change the posture from separate to equal and integrate the minority community into mainstream
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