Is Martin Luther King Jr's Role In The Civil Rights Movement

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Dr. Martin Luther King Junior’s role in the Civil Rights Movement in the United States cannot be understated. However, what appears to be commonly understated is religions role in the movement. Even when it comes to Dr. King, many people forget that his full title would be Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King Junior. In addition to being a Civil Rights leader he was a Baptist preacher. Due to his religious background he brought his theology into the Civil Rights Movement. Two of his key elements of his theology that he applied to the movement were nonviolence and the belief that the defeat of evil is inevitable and that good will triumph. There are theological, ideological, and historical resources that explain his use of these two elements.…show more content…
He writes in his “Pilgrimage to Nonviolence” that he had almost given up hope on the previously explained Christian philosophy of nonviolence working, but then he heard of Mahatma Gandhi. Gandhi was able to fight for India’s independence from Britain using nonviolent practices. King further writes that while on a trip to India he was surprised to see that “the aftermath of hatred and bitterness that usually follows a violent campaign is found nowhere in India.” Armed with the knowledge that after a nonviolent protest there is none of these ugly feelings left over, gave King even more reasons to continue to strive for nonviolence. He wanted African Americans and whites to be equals, having to deal with all the messiness of a violent protest would have delayed this…show more content…
Well more specifically, he talks about the triumph of good, the triumph of the Montgomery Bus Boycott. He assures those in attendance that they are doing the right thing using everything from ideological reasoning such as the Supreme Court and the Constitution to theological reasoning about God and Jesus. He claims that if there protest is wrong all of these things are wrong as well and Jesus “was merely a utopian dreamer that never came down to earth.” Since King believes that what they are doing is right and good it is easy to see why he believes that it will succeed, because good always conquers evil.
Historically, once again King could fall back on Gandhi’s success in India. However, he does not stop there in “The Death of Evil upon the Seashore” he explains how India, Pakistan, China, Indonesia, and Africa have all fought and were victorious over the evil forces in their lives. For all of these places it was the evil of colonialism and imperialism. With so many 20th century defeats of evil, it added fuel to the fire that the evil of segregation could be
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