by Justin (grade 5)
Every February, we celebrate African-American History Month to remind ourselves of the achievements of hard working African-Americans who wanted freedom more than anything. Many African-Americans had ideas about being a civil rights activists and here are just three of the most famous ones and one who was not planning to be an activist, but is remembered as one.
Probably the first person to pop into people's heads is Martin Luther King Jr.
Martin Luther King Jr was born in 1929, he attended Georgia schools, but was segregated from white kids just because he was African-American. After graduating from college, there were protesting everywhere for civil rights across the U.S.. King wanted to improve the protesting when they were protesting about civil rights. So to try to improve it, he gave his “ I have a dream” speech at Lincoln's Memorial at Washington D.C in 1963. This speech as planned, improved the protesting and also stopped segregation in a lot of cities and states in the U.S. He also won a Nobel Peace Prize. Sadly, Martin was assassinated in 1968 by James Earl Ray, a criminal and a white supremacist protester.
But Martin Luther King Jr was not the only civil rights leader to be assassinated. Another civil rights activist was Malcolm X.
Malcolm X was born in 1925, nicknamed “Malcolm Little.” In 1946, Malcolm and his friend were convinced of burglary charges and was sentenced to 10 years in prison.
After being released from prison, he became a key spokesman in the civil rights movement. In 1965, a group of men ganged up on him and killed him. Over 15,000 people attended his funeral.
But the most unlikely person to be famous and remembered was Rosa Parks, and it all started on a bus in Alabama in 1955. A bus driver asked for her to get out of her seat for a white person, but she refused to, so they decided to arrest her. This caused outrage and the civil rights movement to be stronger.
Many achievements of African-Americans were for civil rights and freedom. But also, endurance and perseverance since they have been through a lot, like slavery and trials for crimes they did not do.
A question remains, why is this holiday so important?
First, African-Americans are a very important part in history for their influence and standing up for themselves. And second, their culture has endured many tragedies and it is a good to reflect on their strength and endurance each year.
Everyday today, African-Americans still face racism, but many grow stronger and endure from it.