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Martin Luther King

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MARTIN LUTHER KING * Black Americans played an important role in 1950's and 1960's in the civil rights movement. One leader encouraged above all the others was Martin Luther King. * He was a Baptist minister and was the leader of the civil rights movement. * He was a mesmerizing speaker whose speech 'I have a dream' is now one of the most famous speeches of the 20th century. He did this in 1963 on the March of Washington. There, he raised public consciousness of the civil rights movement and established himself as one of the greatest orators in U.S. history. "I HAVE A DREAM THAT ONE DAY THIS NATION WILL RISE UP AND LIVE OUT THE TRUE MEANING OF ITS CREED: 'WE HOLD THESE TRUTHS TO BE SELF-EVIDENT, THAT ALL MEN ARE CREATED EQUAL.'" ...read more.


* By the time of his death in 1968, he had refocused his efforts on ending poverty and opposing the Vietnam War, both from a religious perspective. * King was assassinated on April 4, 1968, in Memphis, Tennessee. He was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1977 and Congressional Gold Medal in 2004; Martin Luther King, Jr. Day was established as a U.S. national holiday in 1986. JOHN FITZGERALD KENNEDY * (May 29, 1917 - November 22, 1963), often referred to by his initials JFK, was the 35th President of the United States, serving from 1961 until his assassination in 1963. * In 1953 he wrote an award winning book called 'Profiles In courage' about American politicians who risked their careers to stand up for things they believed in. ...read more.


* He also asked the nations of the world to join together to fight what he called 'the common enemies of man: tyranny, poverty, disease, and war itself.' * JKF wanted to start with the 'new frontier' which was more of an idea than a program. This was his big idea to unite the American people to keep them behind them after a very close election. He wanted them to see sense they were on the edge of something new and exciting. * His aims were to achieve equality for black Americans. He made many high level black appointments and stood up for the governors of the southern states and tried to force them to defend the freedom riders. * In October 1962 he sent 23,00 government troops to ensure that just one black student, James Meredith, could study at the University of Mississippi without being hounded out by racists. * Kennedy was assassinated on November 22, 1963, in Dallas, Texas. ...read more.

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