The Ballot Or The Bullet Essay

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The African American Civil Rights movement existed at large between the early fifties and the late sixties in a society that was constantly on the verge of social destruction. The black rights movement existed politically, socially, and economically everywhere in the United States. As time progressed the movement developed and saw many changes along with schisms separating activists and how they approached getting their rights. In the early fifties there was a large non-violent integration based movement spearheaded by figures such as Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks. However, as the time progressed, the movement started seeing a more aggressive leadership with figures such as Malcolm X, but eventually it turned into an extremist movement…show more content…
Malcolm X and his ideals are arguably a representation of the transition from the early 1950 's non-violent movement for integration to a more aggressive black power movement. Evidence of this is shown through powerful strands of his novel “The Ballot or the Bullet” including when he writes, “I don 't mean go out and get violent, but at the same time you should never be non-violent unless you run into some non-violence.” (Malcolm 439). In writing that members of the civil rights movement should never be non-violent he does so facetiously. This excerpt indicates a call for violence as a more powerful method for achieving the equality he feels they deserve. The element of time is referenced by X as justification for the violence, this is evident when he says, “Civil Rights, for those of us whose philosophy is Black nationalism means: 'Give it to us now. Don’t wait for next year. Give it to us yesterday, and that’s not fast enough. '”(Malcolm, 439). Already his tone is more aggressive than the early integrationists who birthed the movement. Malcolm has more justification for the black rights movement than just arguing about the variable of time, he also states that without African Americans the United States wouldn 't have its riches or status. This is all based on the idea that without slavery and generations of black workers, America would never have evolved into the prosperous
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