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Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. - Dreams Do Come True

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Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Dreams do come true.

Around 5:45 p.m. on April 4, 1968 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. stepped onto the balcony of his Lorraine Motel suite, located in Memphis Tennessee. Dr. King was enjoying a cigarette and waving to his followers while waiting on his 6:00 p.m. dinner with colleagues. At approximately 6:01 p.m. a loud gun shot rang out. Supporters of Dr. King viewed in disbelief as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. collapsed to the ground from an apparent gunshot wound ("King" 2003.) Dr. King was rushed to the Memphis hospital but was pronounced dead upon arrival. The apparent assassination of King outraged many of his African American Civil Rights Movement followers, and ignited numerous riots across cities of the United States (History, 1996). Although many people believe that revenge was necessary for Dr. King's death, he himself would have disagreed. Passive nonresistance (a method learned from Mohandas K. Gandhi) was the technique Dr. King used to win many major civil right battles and establish himself as the most influential person of the twentieth century (Bentley & Ziegler p.1073).

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. encompassed many positive attributes which helped instill faith amongst his supporters. As stated above, passive nonresistance is one of the many

techniques Dr. King used to increase political momentum in the fight for African American civil rights. Passive nonresistance was used by King in the form of non violent protest and boycotting. Dr. King led many marches and demonstrations which helped win many civil rights conflicts (Bentley & Ziegler, p.1073.) Montgomery, Alabama 1955, after Rosa Parks illegally refused to give up her seat to a white person, Dr. King influenced many African-Americans to boycott the public transit system until it was desegregated. This proved vital in the fight for black civil rights and gained Dr. King notoriety (Bentley & Ziegler, p.1073.) Dr. King went on to lead many more marches and demonstrations. Some of the more notable of these marches and demonstrations were; the March on Birmingham (1963), the March on Washington (1963) and the March on Montgomery (1965) (Congress.)

The March on Birmingham was an anti-segregation march in which Dr. King influenced many school children and teenagers to fill the streets of Birmingham and join the protest. This of course outraged the local sheriff, Bull Connor. In refute he sent police with attack dogs and firemen with water hoses to help sever the protest (Congress.). Most of the protest control tactics were caught on tape and were considered too extreme for conditions given. Dr. King was unjustifiably arrested; kids were attacked by dogs and sprayed with water while the protest quickly gained national attention. The march seized with white leaders of Birmingham unwillingly ending some forms of segregation.

The March on Washington was perhaps one of the biggest turn outs of Dr. King's time. More than 300,000 people attended the march and once again the Civil Rights movement

gained impetus ("Martin," 2003.) The March on Montgomery ended with a bitter sweet judgment that allowed African Americans the right to vote. Unnecessary brutal abuse (known as Bloody Sunday) by local police departments was televised, this in turn encouraged many more people to come and join in the march (Congress.)

Dr. King was an outstanding public speaker. Kings ability to move an audience with speech became a huge part of his eminence during the Civil Rights Movement (Congress.) Although he was a thunderous voice of black equality movement, while attending college at Crozer many instructors would have deemed Dr. King as an average public speaker. Dr. King received the letter grade C in two public speaking classes his first year at Crozer. It wasn't till his third year at Crozer that professors became aware of Dr. King's tremendous attribute (Congress.) One of the most memorable and powerful speeches that Dr. King ever delivered was given on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in 1963. With a back drop of nearly 300,000 American citizens, Dr. King rose to deliver the keynote address of the afternoon. With the television networks broadcasting live, Dr. King began to speak after waiting out



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