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Prehistory of the Civil Rights Movement

The Civil Rights Movement attempted to resume furthering racial equality and desegregation, but was setback for an entire decade by one factor, the Cold War. African Americans saw a need for desegregation, and with the leadership of the NAACP, blacks succeeded in their fight for their legal rights as citizens of the United States. The Cold War was detrimental in the progression of the Civil Rights Movement. “The impact of the Cold War, the anti-communist purges and near-totalitarian social environment, had a vegetating effect upon the cause of blacks’ civil rights and civil liberties. (Marble 2007) The fear of Communism and the fear of the scones ounces for speaking out against the government caused many people to exclude themselves from the movement. Foreign affairs took place over domestic affairs in US politics and the importance of the fight against Communism was placed over the need for desegregation and other racial issues in America. Walter White, Secretary of the NAACP, could be potentially blamed, in my pinion, for partaking in thus placement of affairs.

Although a leader in the NAACP, he practically abandoned the domestic affairs of civil rights and focused heavily on international affairs, as in colonization of India. Jansen can be credited for saying, “White embraced the liberal anti-Communism that supported USA foreign policy. ” (Jansen 2008) The struggle against segregation was dilatory and intimidating. Dilatory in the sense that it took a decade (1945-1954), not counting the years of slavery and pre-WI, in order for the lacks to be heard and to be seen as even close to equal and to be granted their rights to participate in civil duties such as voting.

White supremacists took great measures in order to stop desegregation. Their intimidation led to fear of activism for desegregation amongst blacks and whites. But African Americans still demanded the desegregation among the lines of education, workplace, public transportation, and also voting rights of blacks. Brown versus Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas was the bell in which struck the awn Of desegregation. The NAACP and activists alike began rallying the federal government to set laws and defend desegregation on all ends.

Groups such as the Committee on Civil Rights were set in place to advocate and fight for the rights of African Americans. (Marble 2007) The Civil Rights Act of 1957 soon followed. This was a victorious moment in history, but only the start of much more. African Americans worked for the victors of WI, as soldiers, factory workers, etc. They proved themselves more than willing to sacrifice for he US. Black soldiers returned home and to their dismay were still treated as second-class citizens. A need for change was apparent.

But it would have to wait. The Cold War between the Soviet Union and US began and the Red Scare was rampant. This caused the Civil Rights Movement to be delayed heavily due to the focus of foreign affairs rather than the civil rights affairs needing to be fixed in America. For a decade, the movement was pushed back but it soon erupted and transformed into a persistent rally for change. Through the slow and not-so steady struggle, blacks fought for desegregation and began on the road to equality.

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