Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Exploration 7 - Zach

The film focused mainly on the discrimination in Nashville and Birmingham, and how blacks acted and how they were treated by the white citizens. In the film, the direct action of sit-ins was prevalent and had a huge impact on Civil Rights Movement. The use of workshops as preparation for sit-ins for the violence and hatred that were to come through that action. And that's what happened: black students who sat at counters in restaurants were beat, heckled, and arrested for their demonstration. One black student said, "Not going to the jail was a disgrace to your family." Meaning that the blacks wanted everyone to participate to show their true devotion. In Birmingham, both blacks and whites who participated in the Freedom Rides, were beat and the buses were fire bombed and damaged. This illustrates the pure hatred for African American equality, and that the white citizens of the South would do anything to keep their area segregated.

The most memorable part of the use of non-violent action by the blacks and whites who supported desegregation and equal rights, was that they kept to their cause, and continued to use non-violence no matter how rough it got. That's what was most impressive is that the demonstrators in actions like sit-ins and the Freedom Rides, kept going because they believed strongly enough to be beaten and arrested. And that was shown heavily throughout the film, with people like Jim Zwerg, Diane Nash, and other participants. It was college students like Zwerg, and Nash that faced violence and jail time, yet still persevered because they believed in their cause. Jim Zwerg even stated after a brutal beating, "we're willing to accept death [for their cause]."

From this film, the concept of dedication, and sacrifice are key to the movement of that time. They gave up their normal lives to participate in one of the biggest movements in American history. The film shows great examples of the blacks going through beatings, and facing the possibility of death, yet they still stayed true to their cause. They did not give up, and they kept going. This can be applied to any movement today or throughout history. And this application is used throughout the word today, in places like Africa and Southeast Asia.

Ben West

Ben West was the mayor of Nashville, TN at the start of the sit-ins and Civil Rights Movement. West had a strong relation with the blacks in Nashville, and was asked for support by the black community during their movement and he did support their cause. He did his best to improve race relations and found that discrimination towards blacks was unmoral and felt that it was wrong. This was mentioned in the film, when a black college student had asked him what his opinion was about discrimination, and he gave his answer as a man, not a politician. In Nashville he desegregated businesses, lunch counters and other accommodations that blacks had demonstrated and directed movements towards.
(Some info was taken from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ben_West)

1 comment:

  1. I do believe that there are many college students no matter white or black that support the freedom rider and desegregation. Ben West is very important people in Nashville that help in the civil right movement!


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