How Martin Luther King Shaped Our Society

By Shayanne Roth. Shayanne lives in Springfield, Ohio in the USA. Please read her article and leave your thoughts and comments below.

Martin Luther King JR. and Rosa Parks both helped change the world because they stood up for freedom and made a big impact on our civil rights. When Martin Luther King JR. said, injustice anywhere is a threat to justice anywhere he linked the historic struggle of equality and freedom for African-Americans to the struggles of people all around the world. Prior to the Alabama bus boycott, the Jim Crow laws were passed in the early 1800s by legislature in the southern states that discriminated against African American. As a result the segregation, African Americans were not hired as drivers, they were forced to ride in the back of the bus and were frequently ordered to surrender their seats to white people. 

In 1943, Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat to a white man on the Alabama city bus and she was forced off the bus.Then, in the year 1955, Rosa parks met Martin Luther king JR. on August 1st and, later that year, was arrested for not giving up her seat. She went through trial on the 5th of December and was found guilty of breaking segregation laws.  The bus boycott begins in 1955 and the protest last for 381 days. The Montgomery bus boycott was a political and social protest campaign for racial segregation and ended December 20 1956 when Browder V. Gayle took effect and led to a Supreme Court decision that declared Alabama and Montgomery laws were unconstitutional. Many important civil rights activists took part in the boycott, including Reverend Martin Luther King JR. and Ralph Abernathy. On December 21nd 1956, the Montgomery buses become desegregated and black passengers could legally sit anywhere on city buses.  In 1957, the southern leadership conference (SCLC) was created to form a strategy for ending segregation and Martin Luther King JR. was elected president. The congress of the United States passed the Civil Rights acts in 1957.  Then, on August 28 1963, Martin Luther King JR., made the I have a dream speech to bring greater attention to civil rights and to call for an end to racism in the United States. He asked for political, social and economic equality between all races Even before the boycott and the John Crow laws, society saw the enslavement of African-Americans.

I, personally, am glad that Martin Luther King JR. and Rosa Parks have taken a historic stand for themselves and their fellow citizens since we are equal no matter the race, colour or creed. No person should be treated the way that black people were treated back then. Martin Luther King JR. inspired thousands of people, including me as someone who comes from America. Listening to his story and Rosa Parks touched me the instant I heard it in school.  I was inspired by the fact that they were leaders for the Civil Rights and forces for change in our society. Martin Luther King JR. fought to get more equal treatment for all Americans, not just white Americans.  It is sad Martin Luther King JR. was assassinated in Lorraine motel In Memphis Tennessee by James Earl Ray. As early as the mid 1950s, King had received death threats due to his prominence in the Civil Rights movement. No citizen deserves to be murdered all because he wanted to help citizens be equal . Without his brave and heroic actions black people could still be slaves today and would not be allowed to have the rights that white people have. They would not have certain jobs and would be unable to support and take care of their family. A lot of our history and the famous people before our times make up the world we have today. African-Americans are American citizens as much as anybody elsewere all equal and all allowed to have the same rights. No American citizen should be mistreated. 

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