• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Why did the desegregation of schools become a major problem in the USA in the 1950's?

Extracts from this document...


Why did the desegregation of schools become a major problem in the USA in the 1950's? After a struggle by the civil rights campaigners the law which caused the desegregation of schools was passed in 1954. The main reason for this law being passed at this time was the case of the Brown family V. the Board of Education of Topeka. The Brown's had a child whom they wanted to attend a school close to their home. However the Browns, a black family, could not attend any of the close schools, as they were all 'white-only' schools. The nearest black school was far away from their home and the Brown family argued that this was not 'separate but equal' as the doctrine said it should be and asked for their daughter to attend the white school, close to their home. The NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Coloured People) helped the brown family and challenged the rights of local school boards to run segregated schools. ...read more.


Some places were entirely white only. All this was to ensure that blacks had the poorest standards of education, lowest paid jobs and were generally treated inferior to white people. Such deep-rooted attitudes in white southerners meant they reacted with anger to the Supreme Court's decision. 67% of Southerners disagreed with the desegregation of schools compared with only 31% of the whole of the USA. The Southern states were determined not to comply with this law and argued that 'state rights meant each state should be allowed to decide for themselves on such issues. An organisation called the Ku Klux Klan had been set up after the civil war. Its main aim was to prevent blacks from gaining equal rights. They used violence and terror to intimidate any American, black or white, who agreed or fought for a policy of equal rights. Members included police officers, judges and politicians, so convictions against the KKK were rare. Support and members of the Ku Klux Klan increased to an all time high when desegregation became law. ...read more.


The fact that all these paratroopers were needed to protect just 9 students showed the deep-rooted racial hatred and discrimination that existed. However, it also showed that the government was serious about desegregation and were listening to what civil rights protestors were saying. The desegregation of schools became such a major problem in the USA because so many, especially in the South, disagreed with blacks being treated the same way as whites and using the same public facilities as whites. Hatred for black people was deep-rooted in white Southerners. They also believed that it was not up to the government to decide such laws, it should be left to individual states. The short-term problems were mainly caused by a white backlash. Desegregation was seen as a step towards equal rights for black people and this caused the racist whites of the South to do all they could to try and stop it from happening. It proved that simply changing the law was not enough to create equal rights, the views and attitudes of white Southerners needed to change aswell before discrimination was non-existent. Emma davis 11NG 3 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE USA 1941-80 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE USA 1941-80 essays

  1. Civil Rights in the USA 1945-1975

    However, when a favourite teacher of his told Malcolm that his childhood dreams of becoming a lawyer was "no realistic goal for a nigger", Malcolm lost all interest in school. He dropped out, spent some time in Boston, Massachusetts working various odd jobs, and then travelled to Harlem, New York where he committed pretty crimes.

  2. History Coursework - Intolerance kkk

    The Ku Klux Klan (KKK) is an organisation that has been around America since the 19th Century. The Klan claim to be true Americans, and are very nationalistic and patriotic, with very strong Christian Beliefs.

  1. The Disadvantages that Black Americans faced in the early 1950's.

    Beat him till he was a bloody lifeless carcass lying on the floor. The lynching season was usually any time around an election.

  2. The USA 1941 - 80 : The Divided Union.

    He shouted and rubbished their character. He constantly interrupted witnesses and demanded that they name fellow communists. * The McCarthy Years, 1950 - 1954, resembled a witch-hunt .In the past when people believed in witches they tortured old women into admitting that they were witches and demanded that these women reveal the names of other witches.

  1. Civil Rights In The USA.

    His "I have a dream" speech will go down in History as one of the most immortal speeches ever. Despite his successes his methods also had it's faults. Martin Luther King Jr's Civil Rights Work were not in vain, some of his successes included; the desegregation of interstate bus stations

  2. Study Source A, The Long Shadow of little Rock . What can you learn ...

    Many other parts of the media contributed to ending segregation. Newspapers and the radio covered a lot of what was happening aswel. Many of the Sources support this e.g. Source B, which is an article on the reaction of the whites on the arrival of black students to whites only

  1. Why Did The Segregation Of Schools Become A Problem InThe USA In The 1950s

    If they were planning a "sit-in" they would make sure that the media were there. This would portray a racist image of the U.S.A throughout the world. In December 1955 a black woman called Rosa Parks refused to give her up seat up for a white man.

  2. In What Ways Were The Lives of Africans changed by the Policy of Apartheid ...

    The Suppression of Communism Act of 1950 defined communism and its aims sweepingly and authorized the government to arrest anyone it considered likely to further any collective aims. Later laws gave the police the right to arrest and detain people without trial and without access to families or lawyers and left the courts with barely any means to interfere.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work