Equality and nonviolence are two tenants which are found in A Growing Nation. They are later on found lodged in the work of contemporaneous work of Dr. Martin Luther Kings work Letter from Birmingham City Jail. Al though, the two tenants are historical contexts that are separate which are influencing these two authors who are very different. These tenants are important for Dr. King Martin Luther as even in his books he tries to achieve goals based on these transcendentalists (King 32).
Martin Luther King, Jr. was born in January 1929 and later on assassinated in April 1969. He was as American Baptist activist, minister, humanitarian and also the leader of the African-American Civil Right movement. King is best known for his major role and responsibility in the civil rights advancement using civil disobedience that was nonviolent as he based on his Christian beliefs and values. His beliefs towards nonviolence were a basis of the transcendentalism of nonviolence and equality among all races. Since he was a preacher, all his endeavors were based on his religious views of being just and being nice to all of humanity (King 41). His nonviolence gesture was based on his religious belief of love and wanting to do the work of God. Altogether, he was influenced by Mahatma Gandhis peaceful and nonviolent approaches. King was brought up as an activist and this greatly influenced his entire existence. He was motivated by how desperately he wanted equality for both the blacks and the whites and how he wanted discrimination against color to end. King wrote a letter known as Letter from Birmingham City Jail which is an open letter which defends the nonviolence resistance strategy against racism. In his work, he emphasized that the public have that responsibility morally, to break laws that were unjust and to further take any direct action against these vices instead of waiting for justice to come, potentially (King 50).
The purpose of Kings piece was to end racism to promote equality and this was to be done in a more nonviolent manner to avoid any killings. The campaign against racism, also referred to as the Birmingham Campaign began with sit-ins, coordinated matches and segregations that were racial in Birmingham. The campaign that was nonviolent was coordinated by King through Southern Christian Leadership Conference and Alabama Christian Movement for Human Rights. Later on, they are banned from boycotting, demonstrating, parading or even picketing but King announces that they will disobey that ruling as they wanted justice served (King 65). According to the African-American society, King is perceived as a hero. His numerous attempts to end racism and promote equality were selfless and empowering to his followers. Al though some people disliked him for causing so many deaths during the parades and boycotts, the majority were in support of his pursuit to free the African-Americans. Eventually, all his efforts bore fruits as he was successful. Even though he died before accomplishing that, he had created a clear path for others to follow through and liberate them against racism. As of today, there is equality between both the whites and the blacks (King 76).
These two tenants of transcendentalism are also evident in Why we cant wait and I have a dream both by Martin Luther King. In Why We Cant Wait, the transcendentalism of nonviolence against racial segregation is still a major theme for the author. It describes the commencement of the Negro Revolution that was meant to stop racism and promote equality. He wanted to stop the slavery treatment towards the blacks as they lacked basic human rights and were ruled by terror and violence while in another work of his, I Have a Dream, which is a speech, he still promotes equality and the end of racism. King describes the dreams that he had of equality and freedom which was to rise from a land that was still under racism and still had hatred and discrimination (Kawohi 45).
Kawohi, Kurt Transcendentalism: A new Revelation, 2002.
King, Martin L. Letter from the Birmingham Jail. San Francisco: Harper, 1994. Print.
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