The Struggle for Civil Rights

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  • 1. “ Freedom: A History of US – What is Freedom ?” While you’re watching the video, define these terms:
    • Black codes
    • 14th Amendment
    • 15th Amendment
    • Ku Klux Klan
    • Civil Rights Act 1875 (and its repeal)
    • Plessy v. Ferguson
  • 2. The Segregation System Emerges
    • Civil Rights Act (1875)
      • Outlawed segregation in public facilities, places of public amusement
      • Struck down in 1883
    • Plessy v. Ferguson (1896)
      • Upheld Louisiana’s “separate but equal” law as constitutional
  • 3. Race Relations in the early 1900s
    • Economic, social inequality for African Americans
    • “Jim Crow” South
      • legal segregation (de jure)
      • Lynching used as a way to terrorize black populations
    • North – de facto segregation
      • Housing, job discrimination, “racial etiquette,” race riots in northern cities
  • 4. Jim Crow
    • Come listen all you gals and boys, I’m going to sing a little song, My name is Jim Crow
    • Well about and turn about and do jis so
    • Eb’ry time I weel about I jump Jim Crow
    Racism in Cartoons
  • 5. Examples of Jim Crow Laws
    • In Oklahoma, telephone booths were segregated.
    • Mississippi had separate soft-drink machines for blacks and whites.
    • In Atlanta, Georgia, an African American could not “swear to tell the truth” on the same Bible used by white witnesses.
    • In North Carolina, factories were separated into black and white sections.
    • In some Alabama towns it was against the law for blacks and whites to play cards, checkers, dominoes, or other games together on athletic teams.
  • 6.
    • In Florida, school textbooks for white and black students were segregated in separate warehouses.
    • In Washington, D.C., black people could not bury their dead dogs or cats in the same pet cemeteries used by whites. Public parks were segregated. Even jails and prisons had separate sections for black prisoners.
  • 7.
    • You are an African American born into slavery in 1845. When you are in your twenties, the U.S. Congress ratifies the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, and Fifteenth Amendments. Still, you know that even though the laws have changed, the hearts and minds of certain Americans in your community have not changed.
    • Which would you do?
      • Get a job working on a local farm to improve your way of life; keep quiet about your status in society
      • Move to a city and try to get an education; join a group that speaks out against prejudice
  • 8. Progressive Era Reformers Booker T. Washington W.E.B. Du Bois
  • 9.
    • W.E.B. Du BOIS:
      • “ political action & civil rights agenda
      • Founded NAACP
      • “ Talented Tenth” – develop small group of college educated men
      • Agitation, protest
      • AA race would be “saved by its exceptional men”
    • Booker T. Washington:
    • Gradual progress through self help & education (agricultural, trades)
    • Accommodation, racial solidarity
    • Most respected by powerful whites
    • Tuskegee Institute
    • Elevation through hard work, material prosperity
  • 10. Recall…
    • What were some of the major population shifts in the first half of the 20 th century?
    • How did this affect race relations?
    • What major political changes reflected a shift toward minority rights? What achievements had been made by the 1950s?
    • What major disadvantages did minorities still have in America by the 1950s?
  • 11.  
  • 12. Southern trees bear a strange fruit, Blood on the leaves and blood at the root, Black body swinging in the Southern breeze, Strange fruit hanging from the poplar trees. Pastoral scene of the gallant South, The bulging eyes and the twisted mouth, Scent of magnolia sweet and fresh, And the sudden smell of burning flesh! Here is a fruit for the crows to pluck, For the rain to gather, for the wind to suck, For the sun to rot, for a tree to drop, Here is a strange and bitter crop. Abel Meeropol , performed by Billie Holiday “Strange Fruit” (video footage)
  • 13. LIFE Magazine – Civil Rights
  • 14. The Civil Rights Movement
  • 15. What set the stage for the modern Civil Rights movement?
    • WWII opened up job opportunities for African Americans
    • Influence of “Double V” campaign
    • During the war, organizations campaigned for civil rights (ie. NAACP, CORE)
  • 16. Battling Segregation
  • 17.
    • What is the message of this cartoon?
    • What’s this cartoonist’s POV regarding race relations?
    Cartoon by Jon Kennedy, Little Rock Arkansas Democrat, May 17, 1954 (Courtesy of Arkansas Democrat-Gazette )
  • 18.
    • Smith v. Allwright (44) - overturned the Democratic Party's use of all-white primaries in Texas, and other states where the party used the rule
    • Sweatt v. Painter (50) – separate professional schools for blacks failed to meet the test of equality
      • separate school failed to qualify, both because of quantitative differences in facilities and intangible factors, such as its isolation from most of the future lawyers with whom its graduates would interact. The court held that, when considering graduate education, intangibles must be considered as part of "substantive equality."
    Challenging Segregation
  • 19.
    • Brown v. the Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas
    FIRST DAY The Supreme Court’s decision in Brown v. Board of Education integrated the schools. But today its meaning is at issue. Here, the first day of desegregation, on Sept. 8, 1954, at Fort Myer Elementary School in Fort Myer, Va.
  • 20. Kenneth Clark’s “Doll Test” (39)
    • In the experiment Clark showed black children between the ages of six and nine two dolls, one white and one black, and then asked these questions in this order:
    • “ Show me the doll that you like best or that you’d like to play with,”
    • “ Show me the doll that is the ‘nice’ doll,”
    • “ Show me the doll that looks ‘bad’,”
    • “ Give me the doll that looks like a white child,”
    • “ Give me the doll that looks like a coloured child,”
    • “ Give me the doll that looks like a Negro child,”
    • “ Give me the doll that looks like you.”
  • 21. Clark’s Findings**
    • 16 black children in 1950 in Clarendon County, South Carolina . Of these 63% said the white doll was the nice one , the one they wanted to play with.
    • Clark also asked children to colour a picture of themselves . Most chose a shade of brown markedly lighter than themselves.
    • **this showed that segregation had detrimental effects on the psychological development of African American children; the study was cited in the Brown case
  • 22. Brown v. the Board
    • NAACP – prove inequality of separate schools
    • Unanimous decision (carefully crafted)
    • Chief Justice Warren – separate schools could NEVER be equal
    • Segregation = UNCONSTITUTIONAL; violation of 14th Amendment
    • Precedent – equal means integrated
    Thurgood Marshall Earl Warren
  • 23. The Russell Daily News (Russell, Kansas), Monday, May 17, 1954.
  • 24. Mrs. Nettie Hunt and daughter Nikie on the steps of the Supreme Court, 1954 .
  • 25. Thomas J. O'Halloran. School integration, Barnard School, Washington, D.C. , 1955.
  • 26.
    • Ike took action to enforce court rulings eliminating segregation
    • would not, endorse the Brown decision or condemn segregation as morally wrong.
    Ike with John W. Davis, lead counsel in South’s fight to uphold Plessy
  • 27. The Dixiecrat Response:
    • The Southern Manifesto – 1956
      • Strom Thurmond
    • accused the Supreme Court of "clear abuse of judicial power."
    • promised to use "all lawful means to bring about a reversal of this decision which is contrary to the Constitution and to prevent the use of force in its implementation."
  • 28. People across the country, like these from Poolesville, Maryland, in 1956, took to the streets to protest integration. This kind of opposition exposed the deep divide in the nation, and revealed the difficulty of enforcing the high court’s decision. (Courtesy of Washington Star Collection, Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library)
  • 29. Central High School, Little Rock, Arkansas; African American students arriving in a U.S. Army car. Supplied by NAACP
  • 30. As white students jeer her and Arkansas National Guards look on, Elizabeth Eckford enters Little Rock Central High School in 1957 Eckford didn’t receive the call from the NAACP stating they would provide transportation; she set out along to desegregate Central High.
  • 31.
    • "One of the fascinating stories to come out of the reunion was the apology that Hazel Bryan Massery made to Elizabeth Eckford for a terrible moment caught forever by the camera. That 40-year-old picture of hate assailing grace — which had gnawed at Ms. Massery for decades — can now be wiped clean, and replaced by a snapshot of two friends. The apology came from the real Hazel Bryan Massery, the decent woman who had been hidden all those years by a fleeting image. And the graceful acceptance of that apology was but another act of dignity in the life of Elizabeth Eckford."
  • 32. Reaction to Brown: The Little Rock Crisis
    • AK’s gov. sends Natl Guard to keep 9 students out of Central High
    • Eisenhower’s response:
      • paratroopers sent to Central High to escort students
    Members of the 101st Airborne escort the Little Rock 9 into school.
  • 33.
    • Had there been no May 17, 1954, I’m not sure there would have been a Little Rock. I’m not sure there would have been a Martin Luther King Jr., or Rosa Parks, had it not been for May 17, 1954. It created an environment for us to push, for us to pull.
    • We live in a different country, a better country, because of what happened here in 1954. And we must never forget it. We must tell the story again, over and over and over.
    • — U.S. Rep. John Lewis at a ceremony commemorating the 48th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education at Topeka’s First United Methodist Church
  • 34. Rosa Parks and the Montgomery Bus Boycott
    • Montgomery Improvement Association – organized a boycott of Montgomery busses
    “ It was time for someone to stand up – or, in my case, sit down” – Rosa Parks
  • 35. If any single event touched off the activist phase of the civil rights movement, it was the Montgomery bus boycott of 1955-56. Triggered by the refusal of a black seamstress, Mrs. Rosa Parks, to take her place at the back of a city bus when the driver demanded it, this grass-roots movement led by the young Martin Luther King lasted for just over a year, from 1955 to late in the next year. For the first time since the depression, political initiative shifted from Washington back into the country itself, in this case the courts, schools, lunch counters, courthouses, streets and jails of the South. ---from The Experience of Politics Cartoon by Laura Gray, first appeared in The Militant, 2/13/56
  • 36. Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC)
    • President – Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
    • Grassroots movement to organize black churches – strong sources of power; had flourished in Jim Crow South
    • to “carry on non-violent crusades” against racism
  • 37. “ Soul Force”
    • Influenced by Gandhi’s satyagraha – striving for justice through love, suffering and conversion of the aggressor
    • Civil disobedience – the refusal to obey an unjust law
    “ We will not hate you, but we cannot …obey your unjust laws…We will soon wear you down by our capacity to suffer. And in winning our freedom, we will so appeal to your heart and conscience that we will win you in the process” - A Christmas Sermon on Peace on Christmas eve 1967
  • 38. Student Non-Violent Coordination Committee (SNCC)
    • Used sit-ins to desegregate lunch counters across the South
  • 39.  
  • 40. Triumphs of a Crusade
  • 41. Freedom Riders
  • 42.
    • Tested Supreme Court’s decision banning segregated seating on interstate bus routes and segregated facilities in bus terminals
    • Bus 2 – firebombed; riders beaten
    • JFK sends in US marshals
  • 43. 1961
  • 44. The Children’s March - 1963
  • 45. Birmingham, Alabama May 2-3, 1963
    • police met 1,000s of children with high-pressure fire hoses and attack dogs
    • Protests, economic boycott and media coverage led to the desegregation of the city
    • JFK – new Civil Rights act
  • 46. Birmingham Church Bombing
  • 47. March on Washington
    • … for jobs and freedom
    • JFK intro. sweeping civil rights legislation in June, 1963
    • Dr. King hoped to speed up passage w/ march
  • 48.  
  • 49. Election of 1964
    • Johnson/Humphrey (D) v. Goldwater/Miller (R)
  • 50. Civil Rights Act (1964)
    • Prohibited racial discrimination in employment and education
    • Outlawed racial segregation in all public places and most private businesses
    During his signing of the landmark Civil Rights Act of 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson shook hands with the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. (United Press International/ File 1964) '' We have lost the South for a generation . - LBJ"
  • 51. What about the 15 th Amendment?
    • granted African American men the right to vote by declaring that the "right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude."
    • So, what kept African Americans from voting in some Southern states?
      • Poll taxes, literacy tests
  • 52. Fighting for Voting Rights: Freedom Summer
    • College students went into Mississippi to register African American voters
    • Trained in non-violent resistance
  • 53. March: Selma to Montgomery 1965
    • After murder of Voting rights demonstrator
    • Mayhem
    • LBJ requests voting rights act
  • 54.  
  • 55. Victories in Voting Rights
    • 24 th Amendment
    • Banned poll taxes
    • Voting Rights Act (1965)
    • Banned literacy tests
    • Federal officials could enroll voters
    • **% of African American voters in South tripled
    1965: President Lyndon B. Johnson signs the Voting Rights Act of 1965 with James Farmer, Director of the Congress of Racial Equality. Photo by National Archive/Newsmakers
  • 56. “ I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired” Fannie Lou Hamer , American civil rights leader, at the Democratic National Convention, Atlantic City, New Jersey, August 1964
  • 57. Pre Class
    • List 2 legislative triumphs (changes in the law) of the Civil Rights movement.
    • Next to each, write a person, group or action that was responsible for it.
  • 58. Challenges and Changes in the Movement
  • 59. Unrest in the North
    • All-black areas
    • TARGET: white authority, property
    • Blacks in North saw struggle in South and became less tolerant of injustices; wanted immediate equality
    Watts (Los Angeles, 1965) 1967 – violence in 100 cities Why do these riots come at peak of optimism??
  • 60. Race Riots
    • Watts – 1965 (NA Newsreel) – 5 days after VR Act
  • 61. President’s Commission on Civil Disorders (68)
    • “ Our Nation is moving toward two societies, one black, one white – separate and unequal”
    • CR movt. Failed to achieve racial integration, reconciliation
    • Separatists emerged in black community (racial polarization)
      • SNCC – Stokeley Carmichael - “Black Power”
      • **only make up 15% of black pop.
  • 62. Malcolm X (Little)
    • “ If you think we are here to tell you to love the white man, you have come to the wrong place.”
  • 63. Malcolm X Early beliefs: Nation of Islam Later: views towards whites softened; “ballots or bullets” Stokely Carmichael Organizer for SNCC; later became a Black Panther
  • 64. New Groups Emerge Nation of Islam* Whites = evil, black separatism, armed self-defense Black Panthers Black nationalism, black power, armed revolt, self-sufficiency, equal housing, employment, protested AA in Vietnam
  • 65. 1968 – A Turning Point
    • Dr. King’s assassination – worst rioting in US history
    • Civil Rights Act - 1968
      • Ended discrimination in housing
    April 4, 1968 - Memphis “ I’m not fearing any man.” – MLK, April 3, 1968
  • 66.
    • Kerner Commission (1968)
      • LBJ’s commission to study urban violence
      • Cause: white racism
      • Ignored findings – white opposition
    • the Great Society
      • Money to fight poverty and nation’s attention went to fighting in Vietnam
    LBJ – Civil Rights and Vietnam “ The Great Society has been shot down on the battlefields of Vietnam” - MLK
  • 67. Civil Rights Gains
    • Legislative
    • Civil Rights Acts (1964, 68) - End of de jure segregation
    • Voting Rights Act (65)
      • no literacy tests
    • 24 th Amendment
      • no poll taxes
    • Other
    • Increased pride/awareness of racial identity
    • New college programs in African American history and literature
    • Greater visibility of African Americans in movies/TV
    • Integration of schools
    • Increase in AA voters, college grads
    • Purchasing power, savings accounts
    • Growth of affirmative action programs
  • 68. Discussion Question
    • Was the nonviolent civil rights movement of the 1960s a success? Why or why not? Can it be argued that the violent protests of the civil rights movement were more successful than the nonviolent protests?
  • 69.
    • Condoleezza Rice Remembers Dr. King
  • 70. Dr. King’s “Letter from a Birmingham Jail”