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How Did Jackie Robinson Impact Society Essay

The United States of America has always strived to provide freedom to those whom the government deemed fit. There have been many instances in United States history in which a particular group of people were prohibited from achieving the freedoms they rightfully deserved. Many organizations assembled in order to promote racial equality and also to break through the color barrier that was designated to keep Americans divided. Although freedoms were denied, many individuals and organizations fought long and hard to ensure future generations did not have to experience the prejudice that was so common in society.

In particular, many people of African descent often encountered such prejudice and discrimination from early on. When people of color were released from involuntary servitude they did not receive many rights that average white men had. They did receive some legal rights under the black codes but even these were restrictive. In the middle to late eighteen sixties two amendments were passed that would abolish slavery and grant citizenship to those who were once slaves. The thirteenth and fourteenth amendments played a huge role in securing rights to previously enslaved men.

However, many white southerners disagreed with these mendments and held onto a deeply prejudice view of African Americans. Many of the racist white southerners made their opinion clear when they formed the KKK and when publicly hung free black men. Although many of these people were free, white people made it extremely difficult for people of color to vote after the fifteenth amendment was passed. For more than one hundred years’ people of African descent experienced racial prejudice because of the color of their skin.

Many individuals in the coming years will advocate tirelessly for the rights that many were wrongfully deprived of. A few years before the twentieth entury, the Supreme Court made a decision that would have an impact on the African American community for the next half of the century. In the case of Plessy v. Ferguson, the courts set a legal precedent known as “separate but equal’. For many years after people of color will endure severe discrimination and hatred in many aspects of their life. This legal precedent allowed for public facilities and work places to be segregated.

The oppressive laws that soon followed were known as Jim Crow laws. Jim Crow laws were so prevalent that even going to a baseball game would have been nearly impossible for a person f color to go to. As a result of the prejudice the black community often ran their own businesses, schools and newspaper organizations to combat a “whites only” dominated society. They even began a black baseball league known as the “Negro League”. Although the Plessy V. Ferguson case preached separate but equal it was quite evident that facilities run by people of color were far less superior than that of the white community.

After many years of encountering such oppression several people decided it was time to challenge Jim Crow laws by social experimentation with integration. Although the xperimentation was one ahead of its time, many felt the best way to initiate desegregation was to introduce a man of color to organized baseball. After many years of unreasonable oppression, the African American community grew tired of the harassment. Many white journalist and sports writers began to criticize the color barrier that many people of color encountered.

One man had the idea to integrate Americas favorite pastime. He was the president and general manager of the Brooklyn dodgers who went by the name Branch Rickey. Rickey felt that the integration of baseball would be a great usiness opportunity and it would also be better for the future of sports and society. Although his vision was quite possible, it would not be an easy task to accomplish. In order to experiment with this idea, he searched for the perfect candidate for the that was willing to confront Jim Crow laws heads on without giving into the white prejudice that engulfed society.

Long before Branch Rickey initiated the desegregation of baseball, much of the black journalist and newspapers would highlight individuals who would be most qualified candidate for integration. Many felt that Jackie Robinson was an overall the best choice for the osition. Robinson was the ideal man for the job because of his inclination to stand up to discrimination. He was also an all- around athlete, a scholar, as well as a m an with military experience. Before Rickey stumbled upon Robinson, he sent men out to search for a mature man of color who could endure racial verbal abuse and who was also a star on and off the field (Zeiler, 17).

In many eyes Jackie Robinson was the guy for the job and he would eventually be put to the test during his season with the Dodgers. It was a great achievement for baseball, Jackie and society as a whole. The signing of Jackie to the Brooklyn Dodgers was remarkable because it gave some insight to how society would act to the future of integration. As Jackie Robinson began his journey on the baseball field, the entire United States was watching very closely at what this meant for the future of the country.

Many times while Jackie Robinson was on the road with the team he encountered a white dominated society. For instance, In Deland, Florida he was stopped in the middle of a game when he was playing for the Montreal Royals by a police officer. The police officer then began to impose southern laws of segregation in the middle of the game. This incident was written in Jackie Robinsons memoir by Wendell Smith in order to account for the deeply prejudice views that southerners firmly believed in. As Jackie went on to become a big leaguer many more instances would unfortunately continue to happen.

Many times in Robinsons career white supremacy would show in the crowd or even on public platforms such as in newspapers where white journalist with prejudice views would dictate the media. Although some of the prejudice was prevalent many others advocated for baseball to be integrated and backed Robinson. Not all people were against the idea of a black man playing aseball with white men. For instance, Westbrook Pegler openly stated that if the southern men who play baseball played the game with black men, they would soon realize that it did not bother them (Zeiler 49).

Much of this public support will help inspire advocates such as the N. A. A. C. P to engage in the fight for liberties. Jackie Robinson himself would engage in protests, such as the marching with Martin Luther King in Alabama. Jackie Robinson was a symbol of hope for many African Americans who sought justice for the wrong doings of their government. Robinson often praised leaders of black advocacy groups ecause he felt their reason was well worth fighting for. Jackie Robinson was a man who brought change to a world where he saw a government support the unjust treatment of a minority.

He would help initiate and support a civil rights movement in his lifetime. Not only was he a great all-around athlete but he also affected many lives who thought that they would not see a black baseball player in their lifetime. For many individuals it was hope that the white government would not always oppress its minorities. It was a symbol for change that was yet to come. He was the first African American inducted to the hall of fame not nly because of his athletic achievements but also for his part in making society a better place by initiating the fall of segregation.

During his lifetime Jackie Robinson was perhaps the most significant ballplayer in history and even today it is still true. Much of what he advocated for is still in effect today in some way. Although many accomplishments were achieved there is still an ongoing fight for civil liberties for people of color and other minorities. These achievements are stepping stones for modern day advocates to fight for what they believe in order to achieve a world without bigotry and oppression.

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