The Civil Rights Movement

• Civil Liberties -- Rights that need protection
from the government
• Civil Rights -- Rights that need protection by
the government
The Civil Rights
Warm-Up Question
Answer in 2-3 complete sentences
• Are civil rights fairly given or
must they be taken?
What was life like before the Civil
Rights movement?
• Use the pictures in the following slides to make
some statements describing life in the U.S.
before the Civil Rights movement.
Civil Rights on the Global Stage
World War II and the Korean War
• During World War II and
the Korean War, racial
minorities such as
Hispanics, or Native
Americans had made
many gains. The U.S.
military had needed their
help and had allowed
them to fight. Many
came home heroes and
earned respect.
World War II and the Korean War
• Most people believed America had fought those wars
for democracy and freedom. Racial segregation started
to seem un-American to many. People remembered
that Hitler and the other “bad guys” had been racists.
The Cold War
• During the Cold War,
America was trying to
convince the world that
it was better than the
Soviet Union, racism
made America look bad
to the rest of the world.
• Communists could use
America’s racism as an
example showing that
the U.S. was evil.
• With the arrival of television,
Americans could watch the
news every day. The nonviolent civil disobedience used
by King made the civil rights
protesters look like good people
and made their opponents look
hateful, violent, and ugly.
People could also hear Dr.
King’s inspiring speeches. He
was a powerful speaker who
knew how to change people’s
hearts and minds.
What is segregation?
• Segregation is the separation of people
according to race or ethnicity.
• Segregation can be about separating AfricanAmericans from Whites, or about separating
Hispanics from Whites.
• Before 1950 segregation was common and
normal in the U.S.A. Segregation deprived
minorities of their rights.
Two kinds of segregation
• de jure segregation
– Segregation by law
• de facto segregation
– Segregation without laws
• Common in the South
• Common in the North
• Laws forbid AfricanAmericans from attending
the same church, using the
same swimming pool, eating
in restaurants, or marrying
White people.
• Housing discrimination
made segregation in the
North. White community
groups did not allow nonWhites to live in White
neighborhoods. Every
ethnic group had its own
part of town.
How were the Civil Rights taken?
• Civil rights leaders used non-violent protests,
civil disobedience, and legal action to change
the U.S.
non-violent protest
Protests that are peaceful and passive in nature
• Boycotts
– Refusing to buy goods or services from a business in order to force it to
change its policies
• Hunger strikes
– Refusing to eat anything in order to get attention for your cause
• Petitions
– Writing a letter to ask the government or a company to change its policy,
and then getting as many people to sign it as possible.
• Marches and demonstrations
– Getting as many people as possible to gather in one place to get attention
to your cause
• Strikes
– Refusing to work in order to force your managers or government to
change their policies
Civil disobedience
• Breaking the law or causing a disturbance in
order to get attention for your cause.
• Sit ins
• The protesters come into a place, sit down, and refuse to
Legal action
• Lawyers can challenge a law or policy in court.
If they convince the judge that the law or policy
is unconstitutional, then the judge will order
them to change.
• People can speak at government hearings or
meetings and try to convince legislators to make
new laws or repeal unfair ones.
Key Victories that take place during the Civil
Rights movement
Linda Brown
• In 1951, a girl named Linda
Brown wanted to go to
school. The white school
was very close by, but the
African-American school was
far away. Her parents sued
the Board of Education to try
to force them to allow Linda
to attend the white school.
Linda Brown
• In 1954, in the case of Brown v. Board of Education,
the Supreme Court decided to hear Linda’s case. Chief
Justice Earl Warren said that segregation in public
schools is unconstitutional. He ordered all the
schools to end segregation.
Rosa Parks
• In Alabama, the bus company had a rule that said all
African-Americans had to sit in the back of the bus.
• In 1955, Rosa Parks, an African-American women, was
coming home from work and was very tired. The seats
in the back were full, but the front seats were empty.
She sat down in the front. When the bus driver
ordered her to move, she refused. He called the police
and they arrested her.
Rosa Parks
• The minister of Rosa’s church, Martin Luther King Jr.,
decided to get involved. He told the AfricanAmericans to stop riding the bus. For months,
African-Americans walked or gave each other rides.
The bus company was losing a lot of money because
most of their passengers were African-Americans.
Eventually, they were forced to change their rule.
Then, in 1956, the Supreme Court declared segregation
on public transportation unconstitutional. This success
made MLK Jr. a household name across the U.S.
College students in Greensboro
• In 1960, many restaurants
would not serve AfricanAmericans. To protest
this, some AfricanAmerican college students
in Greensboro, North
Carolina decided to go to
a lunch counter at a
Woolworth’s Department
store and order food. The
servers refused to serve
them, but the students
refused to leave.
College students in Greensboro
• These lunch counter
protests spread
throughout the U.S.
Many white students came
along to support the
College students in Greensboro
• The students always
stayed peaceful, even
when attacked or arrested.
This made them look
good and made the racists
look hateful and evil.
This strategy was very
successful for convincing
White people to support
civil rights for minorities.
Dr. Martin Luther
King Jr.
• Dr. King Jr. became a
popular leader. He told
people that AfricanAmericans could only end
segregation by non-violent
• He organized a march in
Birmingham, Alabama to
protest against segregation.
People came from all over
the U.S. to join him.
• Many whites also joined
these marches, and most of
the marchers were students.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
• Police attacked the
marchers violently and the
marchers didn’t fight back.
People all over the nation
watched it on television and
started supporting the civil
rights movement.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
• Dr. King’s biggest
demonstration was in
Washington, D.C. in 1963.
250,000 people came. King
made a speech that was
broadcasted on live
television. That speech is
called “I Have a Dream.”
It is his most famous
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
• King met with President
Kennedy and members of
congress to convince
them to pass new laws.
They passed the 24th
Amendment and the
Voting Rights Act of
1965. These allowed
African-Americans to
vote and elect their own
candidates without paying
a poll tax and .
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
• In 1968, he travelled
to Memphis,
Tennessee to support
some AfricanAmerican sanitation
workers. They had
stopped working to
protest being treated
unfairly by the city
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
• Dr. Martin Luther
King Jr. was
assassinated while in
Memphis. His death
made him more
popular and increased
sympathy for AfricanAmericans, however.
How did the Civil Rights Movement
Change Your Life?
Brown v. Board of Education
• The Supreme Court decided that segregated
schools were unconstitutional and ordered
schools to accept racial minorities.
• Think about it.
– “Because of the Supreme Court’s decision in Brown
v. Board…”
– “If they hadn’t changed the rules, then I…”
The Civil Rights Act of 1964
• Because of the Civil Rights movement, Congress
passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964. This law
ended all racial discrimination in public facilities
such as restrooms, restaurants, buses, movie
theaters, and swimming pools.
• Think about it.
– “If they hadn’t changed the rules, then I…”
Immigration Reform
• Before the Civil Rights Movement, American
immigration laws were very racist. People who were
not white were generally not allowed to come to the
• The Civil Rights Movement led to the end of those
racist immigration laws and gave us the open
immigration laws we have today.
• Think about it…
– “If not for the changes in the immigration laws during the
Civil Rights Movement, then I…”
Lau v. Nichols
• In 1967, schools had no ESOL classes, so immigrants
could not learn English and be successful in school.
• In the Supreme Court case Lau v. Nichols, the court
decided that schools must provide special classes to
help students who need to learn English.
• Think about it…
– “If not for the Supreme Court’s decision in Lau v.
Look around you.
• The America you see
today is a product of the
Civil Rights Movement.
We all have better lives
because of their
Eyes on the Prize Video Questions
1. What is the difference between desegregation and integration? What is required for
2. Why was school desegregation so explosive?
3. The NAACP chose to contest segregation in federal courts. What myths did it force
people to confront? What other avenues of protest were open to blacks in America?
4. How can a democracy ensure that it is not undermined by mob rule?
5. What is the role of the federal government in protecting the freedoms guaranteed to all
American citizens when the state fails to do so? What role does the US Constitution play
in protecting the rights of American citizens?

similar documents