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Martin Luther King Versus Malcolm X

1321 words - 5 pages

Martin Luther King and Malcolm X, also known as Malcolm Little, had many different influences, though they led in very different ways. These two important leaders had many struggles with their gaining of rights and even their personal lives. Their beliefs about segregation came from both home and personal thoughts that caused them to strike and act upon segregation laws. They both had their share of fights and let downs that made them fight back harder to win their rights. Martin Luther King was devoted to Christianity and is why he acted nonviolently but on the other hand Malcolm X followed the Muslim religion which led him to believe that whatever it takes is the best way to control things. Malcolm X had a rough life growing up in Omaha, Nebraska. He and his family witnessed their home burning down because someone lit it on fire. Soon after their house had burnt down a mob killed his father. His father was a rural farmer from Michigan who followed Marcus Garvey, who led and founded the Universal Negro Improvement Association. As a boy Malcolm would always go to the meetings with his father. His mother eventually broke down trying to keep the family together and was taken to a mental facility. He was then taken to foster care and attended a white school and was told he should find a job using his hands even though he was top of his class. He then got involved in gangs and went to jail (MLK vs. Malcolm).
While in jail he started following the words of Elijah Muhammad. Elijah was the leader of the Nation of Islam in America. Malcolm over time became the most important and favored leader of the Nation and created economic stability. During his leadership he brought many members to the group making a statement of independence. He also believed the nation should be politically independent from America and create self defense (Malcolm X vs. Martin).
Throughout Malcolm’s life he criticized Martin Luther Kings’ ideas and actions. Although he respected him he disagreed with his beliefs. He later left the NOI and traveled to Mecca to learn of new ways to gain and lead followers. He learned to use methods that a king and his people would use. On the day of the Civil Rights Debate of 1964 Malcolm X and Martin Luther King met for the very first time. They did not speak, but at the end of the debate they shook hands. After the debate he went recruiting men that were ready to fight for their cause, whether it was violent or nonviolent. He then adopted the group called the Student nonviolent Coordinating Committee and brought the more violent people he had gained to join the group. On the date of January 1965 he announced the group would follow any order that meant immediate results. On a trip to talk to Martin Luther King’s wife about the movement he was assassinated. This signaled the start of the bitter fight for black rights (Martin Luther).
Martin Luther King grew up in Atlanta Georgia in the middle class part of the city. Malcolm who excelled in...

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