Essay on The Influence of Martin Luther King Jr.

3366 Words May 10th, 2009 14 Pages
Martin had many influences throughout his life, many of which would shape his rhetoric, and the way he handled himself and those around him. Martin’s influences could be traced back to three things: his parents and home life, his education, and then his own personal experiences with racism. These three topics shaped Martin and his views on racism, and they were also what made him the most respected and the most admired Civil Rights Leader of his time. Martin’s Parents and Home Life Martin Luther King Jr. stood for many things; non-violence, love, equality, peace, all of which could be used to define his perfect community, his perfect world. Martin believed all of these things could be achieved with persistence and the right frame …show more content…
From before young Martin was born, he had refused to ride the city buses after witnessing a brutal attack on a load of Negro passengers. Martin Sr. also led the fight in Atlanta to equalize teachers' salaries and was instrumental in the elimination of Jim Crow elevators in the courthouse. Martin’s father also wielded great influence in the Negro community and perhaps won the grudging respect of the whites as pastor of the Ebenezer Baptist Church. At any rate, they never attacked him physically, a fact that filled my brother and sister and me with wonder as we grew up in this tension-packed atmosphere. With this heritage, it is not surprising that Martin learned to abhor segregation, considering it both rationally inexplicable and morally unjustifiable. Martin’s mother, Alberta Williams King, was behind the scene of setting forth those motherly cares, the lack of which leaves a missing link in life (i.e. Malcolm’s early childhood). Alberta was a very devout person with a deep commitment to the Christian faith. Unlike Martin’s father, she was soft-spoken and very easygoing. Alberta was the daughter of Alfred Daniel Williams, who was a successful minister at Ebenezer Baptist Church preceding Martin’s father. Alberta grew up in comparative comfort as Martin; she was sent to the best available schools and college and was, in general, protected from the worst blights of discrimination. As an only

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