For Blacks, the Terror Is Gone, but Next Steps Wait A Writer Who Covered the Civil Rights Movement in King's Time Worries That Much of the Momentum for Social Justice Has Been Lost amid National Handwringing over Our Problems. MARTIN LUTHER KING DAY

By Fred Powledge. Fred Powledge, the of 14 books, many on civil rights, lives . | The Christian Science Monitor, January 17, 1992 | Go to article overview

For Blacks, the Terror Is Gone, but Next Steps Wait A Writer Who Covered the Civil Rights Movement in King's Time Worries That Much of the Momentum for Social Justice Has Been Lost amid National Handwringing over Our Problems. MARTIN LUTHER KING DAY


Fred Powledge. Fred Powledge, the of 14 books, many on civil rights, lives ., The Christian Science Monitor


ONCE again, as America officially (and, in some cases, grudgingly) acknowledges the debt it owes to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., we stop to think about what we have and haven't learned from the years of the civil rights movement. Next month we'll get another crack at it, as libraries, school bureaucracies, and public television unpack their annual observance of Black History Month - our shortest one, as many a cynic has observed.

Cynicism is very much in order these days. There are times when the only rational conclusion can be that our collective conscience has not only learned nothing but actually has regressed from that amazing era that started with the Supreme Court's 1954 school desegregation decision and ended with the 1965 Selma-to-Montgomery march. Consider just a few items from our national inventory of despair:

* Young black men helped form the backbone of the '60s movement in the South. Now it is commonplace to refer to young black men as an endangered species. The government recently released figures showing that in 1989 the death rate for young blacks was 238 percent higher than for young whites. AIDS and homicide are prime reasons. Experimental schools are proposed just to keep black males alive long enough to escape to adulthood.

* The civil rights movement was a time of invigorating hope, much of it brought on by the skillful guidance of the movement by people such as Dr. King. That hope was nourished by sweaty mass meetings in Southern black churches; by the attentiveness and general support of a nationwide audience; by at least promises of help from Washington; by the depraved and stupid nature of the opposition, and by a steady string of hard-fought victories.

Where is that hope now? It is gone the way of most of our hopefulness these sad, gray days, lost in the mire of our perceived inability to do anything to improve our own lot. We treat most of our problems now as insoluble. Political insensitivity and corruption stretch from our national housing agency to our neighborhood savings and loan to the halls (and restaurants) of Congress.

The debate over abortion (if a public melee can be called a debate) seems unending, as does our sometimes justified hysteria over illegal drugs.

In a few short years we have replaced what was a worthy national goal, equality in the workplace, with ceaseless whining about "quotas." When our big cities decline enough, white America abandons them to black leadership, handing over the keys to ruined infrastructure and squandered treasuries.

* The movement drew much of its strength from concerned white Americans, many of whom gave their time and money, some their lives.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

For Blacks, the Terror Is Gone, but Next Steps Wait A Writer Who Covered the Civil Rights Movement in King's Time Worries That Much of the Momentum for Social Justice Has Been Lost amid National Handwringing over Our Problems. MARTIN LUTHER KING DAY
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.