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Impact of Civil Rights Movement

0 December 13 2017, 18:42 in History Essays

Impact of Civil Rights Movement

The Civil Rights Movement that took place during the 1950s and 1960s helped African Americans gain equal rights. This movement in particular ended the discrimination laws and legalized racial segregation in the United States (Anderson 78). Beyond this, however, the Civil Rights Movement also inspired and contributed to the advancement of social justice and civil rights of other minority groups. Scholars explain that protest and reform movements such as the Civil Rights, "change and reshape the structure of political opportunity and thus the shape and potential efficacy of subsequent movements” (Meyer & Boutcher 83). Some of the groups that benefitted from this call for reform include women, Latinos, and Native Americans.

In general, the movement for equality of African Americans served as a bridge that enabled other minorities to also fight for their economic, social, and political rights. The success garnered by this movement prompted other groups to organize themselves to advance their causes and advocacy for social justice. The minority groups of women, Latinos, and Native Americans mainly modelled their tactics and strategies after the civil rights movement. The struggle for women’s right, for example, similarly pushed for legislation that promoted legal and economic equality for women. This is, in many ways, comparable to the call of American Americans to pass both their civil and voting rights. Alternately, women’s right groups were inspired by the peaceful demonstrations of Black Americans. This resulted in the group conducting numerous marches and protests that promoted their agenda through peaceful means. An example of this is the Women’s Strike for Equity which was conducted on August 1970 when thousands of women marched in New York to demand for equal opportunities in both education and employment.

The African Americans’ fight for equality similarly influenced the Latinos in America to also fight for equality. In fact, many of the Latino leaders were inspired by the writings of Malxolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr. The Latino community particularly called for better educational and employment opportunities. Along with this, the group also demanded for the end of segregation as well as freedom from discrimination. Much like the Black Americans and the women’s right movement groups, Latinos also used non-violent demonstrations as part of their protest. For instance, the group would often conduct sit-ins and marches. The group also involved in many court cases in an attempt to get their call for civil rights throughout media and political channels.

The success of the Civil Rights Movement also inspired the Native Americans to also campaign for equality, respect, and freedom. Similar to how African Americans called for inclusion, Native Americans also wanted to be recognized as self-sufficient and self-sustaining members of the society. Hence, the group fought for the end of racism, dispossession, and violence. Native Americans similarly called for the preservation of their tribes and identity. In order to pursue this, the group modelled their strategy after the peaceful walks and non-violent protests of African Americas.

To sum, the Civil Rights Movement is monumental in a sense that it altered the culture of advocacy and protest in the United States. Simply put, the Civil Rights Movement of African Americans was instrumental in fostering activism among other minority groups. More particularly, it made social justice a legitimate cause. Hence, the success of this movement spurred other groups to organize their own movements in order to advance their communities’ concerns. Many of these reform groups patterned their strategies after the Civil Rights Movements. For example, women, Latinos, as well as Native Americans also adapted non-violent tactics to promote their concerns. This includes marches, demonstrations, and sit-ins.

Works Cited

Anderson, T. The Movement and the Sixties. London: Oxford University Press, 1996

Meyer, D.S., & Bouthcer, S. A. "Signals and Spillover: Board V. Brown of Education and Other

Social Movements”. Perspective on Politics, American Political Science Association, 5

(2007): 82-83

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