Comparing Dr. King's Letter To Birmingham

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Purpose: Dr. King had a few different purposes for writing this letter. While in jail Dr. King received a statement from fellow clergymen calling his actions “unwise and untimely”. He wanted to explain why he chose to take actions at the time he chose to. He felt it necessary to explain the reason that a change was needed. Also wanted to explain why he chose the actions that he did. Another explanation in the letter was why he chose Birmingham. Dr. King also explained why he saw it okay to follow some laws, but not others. All of these in hope, others would understand. Questions: Dr. King addressed many questions that were being asked of him. Why Birmingham? He answered by saying, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice in a single garment of destiny”. Why direct action? Why sit-ins? Why not just negotiate? The truth of the matter was, negotiation, sounds good. However, it had been tried. People had put up signs and either didn’t follow them, or eventually took them down. So he turned down the path of nonviolent direct action. He hoped to create such a “crisis” that the tension between the two groups would be too much that the issue of race can’t be ignored any longer. He also sought to answer the question of why some laws should be followed while other shouldn’t. He saw some laws just, and other unjust. A law was simply a code to keep…show more content…
King offered the point of view of people in the past that had to fight a similar kind of fight in hopes that people would better understand why he is conducting nonviolent direct actions. He talked about the early Christians that had to “face hungry lions and excruciating pain of chopping blocks rather then submit to certain unjust laws of the Roman Empire” He refers to the Boston Tea Party in the United States history. Even then civil disobedience was needed to gain attention. He admits that even in Germany, it was “illegal” to help the Jewish. Yet, most people would, including himself would
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