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In what ways did black Americans secure improved civil rights during the years 1945-63?

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Laura Keren i) In what ways did black Americans secure improved civil rights during the years 1945-63? ii) Why was there increased racial tension in the USA in the years 1964-70 i) Black Americans have tried to secure civil rights during 1945-63 in some very different ways with many different ideas and leaders. One way is legal action and another is peaceful protests. Legal changes- The NAACP or National Association for the Advancement of Colured People worked to change laws like the Jim Crow laws of the south. This organisation brought many cases to the Supreme Court one of which was the important Brown v The Board of Education of Topeka. The organisation through which Oliver Brown, a black local sued the city school board for not allowing his eight year old daughter to go to the near by school, forcing her to go to study much further away. A year after this case ended the Supreme Court declared that all states with segregated education were to allow black students in to their all white schools, but in the southern states the law was often not accepted and there remained white only schools with no blacks because the south were so opposed to the blacks. The first real test of this law enforcement was Little Rock where the main school was an all white school called Central High School. ...read more.


Freedom riding was another way blacks and whites tried to protest peacefully. The people who did this were trying to exercise the rights that the Supreme Court had given them in 1946 after the Irene Morgan case, which declared segregated seating "unconstitutional". The idea was that whites would use only black facilities and blacks would use only white facilities, where they could. The violence was bad and often groups of freedom riders would be mobbed and beaten but despite the beatings the freedom riders were determined to show the world what they were doing. Jim Peck a white freedom rider who had suffered terrible beatings insisted "I think it is particularly important at this time when it has become national news that we continue and show that non-violence can prevail over violence " Jim was one of many whites who took the brunt of the violence they were seen as traitors and treated as outcasts. ii) There was increased racial tension in the USA between the years 1964-70 because some black people rejected Martin Luther King's way of dealing with racist attacks on black people. They thought that King's way of dealing with his equal rights was too slow because of taking everything through court, and even if he was prepared to wait, they weren't. These people who rejected the peaceful way started other movement groups who insisted on black power. ...read more.


On the 22 of November that same year Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas, and America's new president Lyndon Johnson who was a southerner forced the Congress to pass an Act of Civil rights which made it illegal to have segregation in all education, housing and it stated that blacks were to have equal employment rights and opportunities. Then in 1965 there was another Act passed saying that it was illegal to stop blacks from voting by setting literacy tests. On March the 7th 1965 a peaceful protest was held, it was a march in protest of a demonstrator killed by a state trooper in Alabama. This march was to appeal to Governor Wallace to stop police brutality towards peaceful protests. State troopers met the marchers and attacked protesters. The march was meant to be delayed until the 8th because Dr. King had been called to the president, but the people taking part in this march did not want to wait and went ahead anyway. When the troops waiting for them told them to disperse and they did not, the troopers chased and attacked the demonstrators and the black locals who had not taken part in the march. There were two other marches held in that month, in the first one which was held on the 10th one protester died, but the second was more successful and the voting Act was passed in that year. ...read more.

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