Why did the effectiveness of the black campaign for equality decline 1965-68?

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Why did the effectiveness of the black campaign for equality decline 1965-68? (40 marks)

The Civil rights campaign had been in full swing during 1960-64 as they were using new methods of protest but by 1965/66 the campaign had lost its flair as the protestors appeared to have exhausted a lot of peaceful methods which were initially used and were being largely ignored. 1965 may be seen to mark the beginning of the end of peaceful protests as during this year more and more riots started to break out, initiated usually by black citizens. The government then digressed from the subject of Black Civil rights and this gave radicals an opportunity and reason to rise.

         Martin Luther King, a figure head for the black campaign for equality, had been publicly fighting successfully for the cause since around 1955; he had campaigned successfully in the south and decided to spread the movement to the north. However he was entering uncharted territory and had limited knowledge of the area, he assumed the north would be the same as the south in terms of tackling the problems; this was not the case. He began in 1966 in Chicago and moved into the slums to demonstrate his empathy and understanding of what life was like for the poverty stricken blacks. The react from northerners, even blacks, wasn’t at all what King had expected. The violence displayed by the black people was formidable, despite the fact king had always pulled out of marches if he or his followers were in danger; he carried on with the march in Chicago. This violent reaction from black people showed an obvious lack of support for Martin Luther King and his philosophy and showed a general decline in the effectiveness of King’s protests, especially in the north. This may have been due to King’s lack of planning and awareness of what went on in the north and ultimately may have been a sign that king was growing weary and had no clear plan for the future of the movement which was obviously going to result in failure.

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          King’s philosophy had always been to engage in peaceful protest but towards the latter stages of the 60’s some followers were getting tired of not seeing enough change brought about by this attitude. By 1965 Malcolm X had established the Muslim Mosque Inc. (founded 1964) and young radical black activists were joining his followers as he explicitly displayed his pro-black nationalism attitudes; he didn’t want integration, he believed blacks could only develop by themselves. He also warned the government that if they did not act quickly there would be a wave of violence from his ...

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