American Family: Opportunities and Obligations: Sample Essay

Sample Essay

Words  1,052

As the title indicates, this paper is on the American families, in this case, minorities.  That is to say the opportunities available to them in the period after the Second World War. Moreover, the problems they have been facing in getting what is due to them. This paper analyzes the evolving situation and how things have changed since the time of the birth of the civil rights movement.

The modern civil rights movement came into focus during World War II and ultimately changed the nation in the 1950s and 1960s. Much like the earlier civil rights movement of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, the modern movement had atypical leaders with different visions and methods, from A. Philip Randolph, to Martin Luther King, Jr., to Malcolm X.  This manuscript explores the messages and actions of these three leaders, the history of the movement as a whole, and some of the most momentous civil rights legislation.

At the close of World War II, there were two grounds for hopefulness in the civil rights movement:

  • White alliances. Many white liberals were now committed to civil rights.
  • Election returns of 1946. Republicans won in many districts that had formerly been staunchly Democratic, proving to Democrats that blacks were a viable political group. By the decades of the 1940s and 1950s, the black vote had established itself as a political constituency comparable to big labor, big business, agriculture, and other special interest groups.

Brown vs. Board was the case, which broke ground for affirmative action and equal rights. By the time this case reached the Supreme Court in 1954, other cases had joined it, so that the decision would have the national aftermath. Conservatives were surprised when, on May 17, 1954, the Supreme Court came to the unanimous decision that

“In the field of public education the doctrine of ‘separate but equal’ has no place. Separate educational facilities are inherently unequal.” (Brown vs. Board)

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