Black Power Movement Vs Civil Rights Movement

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While both the Civil Rights Movement (CRM) and the Black Power Movement (BPM) had the same goal (to end racial inequality), the CRM conducted a non-violent approach to reach this goal whereas the BPM conducted a violent approach. Another difference between these two movements were women’s recognition; though women played an equally important role in both movements, they were much more recognized and credited in the BPM. The Civil Rights Movement, which began in the 1950s, was made up of multiple organizations that prided themselves on their non-violent protests and civil disobedience (Dwyer). The most prominent organizations were the NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored people), CORE (Congress of Racial Equality), SNCC…show more content…
The BPM was divided into two separate groups: the pluralists and the nationalists (Dwyer). The pluralists believed in integration and the possibility of all races living together peacefully. The nationalists were for black separatism and believed the opposite; that white culture was bound to oppress black culture and, therefore, the only solution was to withdraw from American society and develop their own society with their own institutions run solely by blacks (Dwyer). The original leader of the BPM was Stokely Carmichael who started out as a pluralist but eventually defined himself as a nationalist. In 1966, Bobby Seale and Huey P. Newton formed the Black Panther Party (BPP) which came up with a Ten Point Plan; a list of their demands and the promise that they were ready to employ violent means to achieve them (Dwyer). The BPP saw the use of violence as self-defence and the only way to prove that they were there to truly fight for their rights. The organizations created during the CRM got involved in the BPM. SNCC and CORE supported the use of violence whereas SCLC and NAACP did not (Dwyer). Some examples of the way the BPP demonstrated violence are through a number of shootouts between Black Panther members and the police during 1967 to 1968, as well as an ambush of police officers with guns and fragmentation bombs in 1970 (Joseph). The BPM did not succeed in having any bills passed but they did keep the struggle for civil rights alive and in the public eye which allowed for future generations to learn about the issue and continue the search for equality
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