To What Extent Was the Second World War a Turning Point for African Americans in the Struggle for Civil Rights? Essay

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The Second World War was a turning point for African Americans in the struggle for civil rights because they gained respect from most whites, but only to a certain extent. It helped them to get the vote, but outside the southern states suffered from de facto segregation, Southern states suffered from De Jero segregation and Jim Crow Laws, but they started to gain respect from some whites. The Second World War was a turning point for African Americans as it showed equality, however, voting rights did not necessarily result in the number of black votes within a constituency boundary. In 1945, there were only two black members of Congress, Representative William Dawson from Chicago, and Adam Clayton Powell, who had been elected to Congress in 1944 because newly drawn constituency boundaries ensured that Harlem’s quarter of a million blacks would be able to elect a black man to the House of Representatives. So, even though they took a step forward in equality outside of the south, it didn’t really help that much as they couldn’t do much with the vote because of the attitudes shown towards blacks from whites. This also links to segregation shown outside the south, even though it was no longer the law. The Second World War was not a turning point for African Americans because even though segregation was not a law in the states outside the south, they still suffered with De Facto segregation. This happened in cities such as Boston, Philadelphia and Detroit. The black population of such cities was concentrated in ghetto areas, where homes and schools for blacks were inferior to those for whites. Because of their lack of education, blacks had fewer job opportunities than whites. Outside the south, whites were just as unwilling as southerners to mix with blacks. You can change the laws but you can’t force to change the attitudes whites felt towards them. Whites did not

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