Thelives and the struggles of African American have been quite useful inreshaping the history of United States as they fought for freedom andequity. When the first sheep of slaves landed on the shore of U.S.,no one knew such a generation would transform greatly and rewrite theHistory of U.S.(Dierenfield, White & White, 2014). proved to be resourceful labor in the form lands,but after some few centuries the Congress outlawed the importation ofnew slaves. The African American society leaders and social movementshave played a great role in shaping the history of U.S.
Onenotable African American who helped shape the justice system historywas Dred Scott who petitioned the court for freedom as he was in theslave in a free state. Nevertheless, the court ruled that he was notentitled to any privileges under the Constitution.Thus, he could notsue an individual as he was a property. Dissenting voices indicatedthat the decision would go in history as one of the worst in thesystem of justice. Due to the oppression faced by the slaves insouthern America, Nat Turner in 1861 rose to defend them(Dierenfield, et al 2014).He led a slave rebellion that created a lot of fear in hearts of thewhite southerners.
Consequently,as time passed the need for equality grew leading to the break out ofthe Civil War. After the end of the war, slavery was abolished.However, the African American continued to suffer through instrumentsof discrimination and racism. As a result, startedto fight for their space in the history of the USA. When one looksclosely at the role have played in American historyit is quite great and cannot be ignored. Turner ignited the desirefor to fight for their freedom and equality(Dierenfield,et al 2014).
Anothercharacter who followed suit and managed to create a movement was RosaParks. She was an African America woman who refused to give her seatto a white passenger, and as a consequence, she was arrested andconvicted, an action, which led to wide boycotting of the AfricanAmericans on boarding buses. As a consequence, this movement led tothe abolishment of segregation laws. That movement also encouragedthe proceeding of Brown v. Education Board Decision, increasing thedesire for the to demand fairness (Dierenfield,et al 2014).
Thelearning from course material helps one to comprehend the role thatRosa played in igniting the fight for equality. A student canunderstand how these leaders gave inspiration, ideological guidance,and resources to the movements as without them in the picture and theactions they took, it would have been impossible to bring any change.Moreover, students can understand the importance collaboration inhelping to transform social life. Martin Luther King Jr. was a leaderof Montgomery Improvement Association where Rosa had been youthleader and secretary (Dierenfield,et al 2014).
Itwas this movement that helped mobilize people to protest thetreatment of Rosa showing the importance of social movement in theimplementation and fronting of social justice. Moreover, a studentcan understand the importance of being in a leadership position. Themovements also provided opportunities for other leaders to emerge.Martin Luther King due to his exceptional oratorical and conciliatoryskills remained as a major spokesman for the blacks(Dierenfield, et al 2014).What made Martin be able to succeed was the fact that people desireda change and as a young man he was courageous enough to mobilize thepeople and his oratory skills also helped him to be influential amonghis fellow Africa Americans above holding various positions of power.
Thesubsequent winning of led to the creation ofanother movement such as Southern Christian Leadership Conference(SCLC) was formed after the success of the Montgomery boycott underthe leadership of Martin Luther. It achieved its first success in1963 when it launched its major campaign in Birmingham, Alabama(Dierenfield,et al 2014).The clashes between nonviolent protesters and police gained sympathyfrom the Northerners and prompted President John F. Kennedy to pushfor new civil rights legislation. This was a fight for equality thatblacks were craving for. The protests helped to bring a passage forthe Civil Rights Act in 1964, which outlawed segregation and racialdiscrimination in schools, public facilities, and employment. Allwomen also benefited from the act since it outlawed all forms ofdiscrimination. This shows the importance supporters and people inpower in bringing change.
Martinalways advocated for peace in bringing chance, and he made his markin the history of USA with his “I have a dream” speech whichmoved masses. However, another instrumental civil right activistMalcolm X was against the non-violent approach of Martin inadvocating for change, and he too received a lot of following. It wasnot long that Malcolm X was assassinated actions which proved toincrease provocation and even more uprising among the AfricanAmericans leading to the formation of Black Power movement(Dierenfield,et al 2014).
Afterthree years since the death of Malcolm X, Martin was assassinated, anaction that led to the mass protest. This showed the retaliation ofthe African American and the importance of oneness in times ofcalamities. Furthermore, the African American continued to use anychannel to express their plight and at international stage would seemappropriate at Olympic Games in Mexico City, protested against racial segregation and discrimination (Dierenfield,et al 2014).The use international stage would have proven to be effective as theathletes had freedom and an opportunity to show the world what theywere going through at home.
Theplight of the African-American led to the strengthening Black Powermovement which helped in the marshalling of people together to fightagainst racial discrimination and injustice. These movements weremade stronger by the presence of previous courageous leaders who didanything to liberate their people. Thus, in the achievement ofsuccess among can be elaborated to joint efforts ofmembers of society as no single individual would have achieved thison their own.
Therefore,in any war of liberation and freedom, students can understand thatgood and unwavering leadership is needed in addition to collaborationwith people who are the power that is able to make and implementpolicies. Moreover, a student understands that social movements areimportant in initiating change just as in the case for Rosa and afterthe death of Martin. After reading course material, it becomesevident that the African American society played a great role intransforming and changing policies and the history of USA, both inthe justice system and the amendment of the Constitution.
Dierenfield, B. J.,White, J., & White, J. (2014). Ahistory of African-American leadership.London: Routledge, Taylor and Francis.