In his “Letter from Birmingham Jail”, Martin Luther King, Jr. is responding to criticism of the peaceful protests and sit-in’s that were taking place in Birmingham, which led to his being arrested and the reason that he was in jail. He first responds to the accusation of being an “outsider” by setting the stage for his being in Birmingham due to being invited because of his ties to the Alabama Christian Movement for Human Rights organization and due to the fact that he is president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. Next, Martin Luther King expands on his moral beliefs that there is “injustice” in the way that Birmingham is “the most thoroughly segregated city in the United States”.
When responding to the eight white clergymen, he states, “Seldom do I pause to answer criticism of my work and ideas,” giving the reader the notion that a plethora of criticism must come across his desk. But, he has chosen to write a response and explain himself simply because King feels they are “men of genuine good will” and their criticism is “sincerely set forth.” After the introduction of his letter, he feels he must next explain his location at the time: Birmingham Jail. “I am in Birmingham because injustice is here,” says King. This quote lets the reader know there is a reason behind King’s arrest, a very good reason, too.
In 1963, Martin Luther King Jr. led a peaceful movement in Birmingham, Alabama. The purpose of the demonstration was to bring awareness and end to racial disparity in Birmingham. Later that night, King and his followers were detained by city authorities. While in custody, King wrote the famous “Letter from Birmingham Jail.” This letter voiced out his disappointment in the criticisms, and oppositions that the general public and clergy peers obtained.
“Letter from Jail” On April 16, 1963, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. wrote a letter to the eight clergymen while he was incarcerated. Dr. King wrote this letter to address one of the biggest issues in Birmingham, Alabama and other areas within the United States. The “Letter from Birmingham Jail” discussed the great injustices that were happening during that time towards the black community. Dr. King wanted everyone to have the same equal rights as the white community, he also went into further details about the struggles that African Americans were going through for so many years, which he felt like it could change. Martin Luther King Jr’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail”, expressed his beliefs and his actions about the Human Rights Movement.
In Martin Luther King, Jr.’s essay, “Letter From a Birmingham Jail” and Henry David Thoreau essay “Civil Disobedience,” both share their opinions on social injustice and civil disobedience. They both believe that people can protest unfair and unjust laws imposed on them in a civil way. In addition, King and Thoreau are challenging the government with their essays, which they wrote after they got sent to jail. For protesting the treatment of blacks in Birmingham, Alabama, King spent eleven days in jail; Thoreau spent a night in jail for refusing to pay his poll tax. Both King and Thoreau’s essays present similar plans for a resolution.
Although that was enough reason to be in Birmingham King goes on further to say that he is in Birmingham because injustice is here. King says he couldn’t ignore the fact there was injustice in Birmingham regardless if he was an outsider or not. King goes on to say that “injustice anywhere is a danger to justice everywhere” this builds on the theory that “whatever affects one directly affects all indirectly. Defending his belief on just and unjust laws, King uses a quote of St. Augustine the quote says, “A unjust law is no law at all.” King uses this to answer the criticism on how can you advocate people to obey one law but breaking others.
Martin Luther King’s Letter from Birmingham Jail addresses his fellow clergymen and others who critiqued him for his actions during this time. The clergymen along with others are addressed in an assertive tone allowing them to fully understand why his actions are justified. Throughout the letter critics are disproved through King’s effective use of diction and selection of detail. Martin Luther King opens the letter stating that the clergymen are being “influenced by the argument of ‘outsiders coming in” consequently he explains the reason for him being in Birmingham. In the opening of his explanation he states the injustices occurring, relating it to the prophets of eighth century B.C.
In Martin Luther King Jr.’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail” he is addressing the Clergymen, more specifically the white church and its leadership who criticized his efforts in the civil rights movement, by calling his demonstrations unwise and untimely. He is also simultaneously addressing the national audience as well in letting them know of the injustices of the time. It was 1963, and Martin Luther King Jr. wrote this letter from inside a jail cell. He had been arrested during an anti-segregation march for not having a valid parading permit in Birmingham, Alabama. In this letter he addresses the criticisms that were brought forth to him.
Have you ever read an article or book that express a lot of sympathy and it made you feel as if you can feel their pain. “The Letter From Birmingham Jail” displays the true meaning of pathos. After reading this” letter” emotions will overflow. Dr. King wrote with so much passion and courage, that it makes his readers feel as if they were part of the movement. He shows his concerns for the African American community by expressing their thoughts and feelings because they feel as if they have no voice.
King believed that if he could just go to Birmingham, and protest non-violently, that he could make a difference. On April 16, 1963, Martin Luther King Jr. was imprisoned, in Birmingham, for protesting the civil rights of Black Americans. While in jail, he began writing a letter addressing the clergymen. His main audience in writing this letter was to the eight clergymen who criticized his actions and also the majority of the population as well. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “Letter From Birmingham Jail”, argues that injustice
While in solitary confinement for nearly 8 days, reverend and social justice activist, Martin Luther King Jr., wrote his famous Letter from Birmingham Jail in response to the criticism he received for his non-violent protests. Several clergy who negatively critiqued King’s approach of seeking justice, wrote A Call for Unity, arguing that his protests were senseless and improper. Within the article, the clergymen provide nine different critiques that asserted how King’s protest are invalid, uneffective, and simply unintelligent in the fight for obtaining justice and equity for individuals of color. His letter has become one of the most profound pieces of literature of the 20th century, as King uses vivid examples and eloquent rhetorical devices to counter all nine arguments.
Civil rights leader and social activist Martin Luther King Jr. wrote a world renown correspondence, Letter From Birmingham Jail, in April of 1963, during a time when segregation was at it’s peak in the South. When King was making his mark in American history, the United States was experiencing great social unrest due to the injustice towards their colored citizens, which would lead to social rights rallies and unnecessary violence. In response to King’s peaceful protesting, the white community viewed “[his] nonviolent efforts as those of an extremist,” and subsequently imprisoned the pastor (para 27). King specifically wrote to the white clergymen who had earlier addressed a letter to him as to why he was apprehended, in which they argued that his actions were untimely and unconstitutional. In response, King emphasized that justice is never timely, and the refusal to acknowledge equal rights was inhumane and regressive.
Dr. King's, "Letter from a Birmingham Jail" is poignant in many ways in regard to a "big picture" viewpoint of our society. Overall, it speaks to the viewpoint that we all have a social responsibility to each other to work against injustice irrespective of where that injustice takes place. "Martin Luther King Jr.'s letter from Birmingham Jail, which was written in April 16, 1963, is a passionate letter that addresses and responds to the issue and criticism that a group of white clergymen had thrown at him and his pro- black American organization about his and his organization's non- violent demonstrative actions against racial prejudice and injustice among black Americans in Birmingham. Dr. King told the local clergy in Birmingham that he understood he was an outsider and he realized that his presence in Birmingham would cause trouble. However, he also felt that he had a moral
Response to “Letter from Birmingham Jail” by Martin Luther King Jr. In Martin Luther King’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail”, he responded to statements written in a Birmingham newspaper that criticized his actions in the city. He undermined these disapprovals by explaining his belief in nonviolent direct action. King also went on to give opinions on other topics, such as, the lack of support from white moderates and white churches. He used technique and structure to develop his ideas and justify his methods.
In 1963, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. wrote the “Letter Birmingham Jail” from jail in Birmingham, Alabama in the response to public statements issued by eight white clergy calling his actions “ unwise and untimely”. “ That this wait has almost always meant never”. Dr.King wrote this letter to demonstrate the battle against racial segregation. He was asking in this letter to make admins to stop segregation, and to become equally as one. Dr.King achieved his goals by taking action by four steps, which are gathering facts, negotiation, self-purification, and direct action.