After doing research to compare/contrast the two groups, the Black Panthers and the Ku Klux Klan, it opened my eyes. I realized that the new generation is oblivious to the existence of both groups and the similarities and differences in them. I researched the two different groups to see when the groups came into existence who were the members, why they fought for rights they thought they deserved and the group’s involvement in violent acts and their remnants today.
In World War II, blacks fought for the American dream willingly, but separately from the white soldiers. When the war was over, human rights activists of all races and educated blacks thought the soldiers and blacks deserved the right of equality. Malcolm X was one of the many human rights activists. He was an African-American Muslim minister he thought after years of non-violence, signing petitions, marching, praying and crying and blacks doing the impossible to be recognized as human beings, it was time for them to take it into their own hands. Malcolm X was then assassinated February 21, 1965. Today many of his quotes like this one are famous.
“And when I speak, I don’t speak as a Democrat. Or a Republican. Nor an American. I speak as a victim of America’s so-called democracy. You and I have never seen democracy – all we’ve seen is hypocrisy. When we open our eyes today and look around America, we see America not through the eyes of someone who has enjoyed the fruits of Americanism. We see America through the eyes of someone who has been the victim of Americanism. We don’t see any American dream. We’ve experienced only the American nightmare.”
The Black Panther Party was then founded by Huey P. Newton and Bobby Seale, in 1966, it was based on ideas which were strongly associated with Malcolm X’s life works it was made up of progressive militant political organization. They advocated Black Nationalism and had strong believes in the necessity of violence and armed self-defense. They patrol African American neighborhoods to protect residents from acts of police brutality and to obtain freedom from white oppression. Fought for the rights of American blacks in the US, they called themselves “Revolutionaries”.
Ku Klux Klan on the other hand was founded in 1866 in Pulaski, Tennessee. The Klan members were many former Confederate veterans determined to fight for the right to restore white supremacy they called themselves “The Invisible Empire of the South”. Ku Klux Klan believed that black weren’t fighting for right but for special right and that Negros were happier when they had nothing not even their own name. They also showed resistance to policies that gave the right to economic equality for blacks and other minorities.
The Black Panthers were non-violent they petitioned for the right for Black Americans to bear arms. Reason being the police weren’t there for their safety or to promote their welfare they were there to contain, brutalize and murder them. With the blacks starting to carry guns came violence. There were shootouts with police which killed many innocent people, riots that destroyed towns, blacks had means to defend themselves but then crime skyrocketed. The Black Panther weren’t organized as some thought and weren’t ready to fight a revolution they just wanted to be treated like an equal and were ready for anything that crossed there path.
Ku Klux Klan had and still have a very violent disposition, they could terrorized the black and any other minorities that they thought threatened their white purity as they referred. Being that the sheriff upheld the rights of the Klan and courts upheld the rights of the sheriff. The Klan killed civil right helpers’ blacks and whites. Civil rights helpers assisted blacks learn to read so that they could vote as well as getting them to the poles to vote. KKK burned many churches, schools and were involved in lynching of hundreds.
Now after two decades of failure 1982 was the official end of the Black Panther Party they did accomplish one thing a major change in police brutality in Oakland went way down. Black Panther also went back to square one the non-violence approach, by setting up organization to help needy family such as free clinic and free meal programs. Educated blacks and activist in this generation are very disappointed in blacks not getting involved and how they accept the minimum for themselves.
KKK on the other hand are still very prominent and doubled in size. They even still to this day try to recruit new members by putting flyers with candy on doors in residential areas, doing pod cast, and even do interviews to try to convince the public what they are doing is right and isn’t racist as all. They are even trying to adopt highways in some states which judges aren’t allowing, even after they try to convince them it’s to keep nature clean.
Courtney from Study Moose
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