Since the clergymen believed desegregation should be achieved through the deliberation of time and with invitational processes, Martin Luther King wrote a letter to convince them that blacks should not wait passively to be wholeheartedly accepted by the white moderate. In paragraph 23 to 26, King conveys that in order to gain racial equality, protests similar to the one occurred in Birmingham are necessary means to expatiated slow progress, break unjust laws and orders and eventually achieve civil rights for its protesters.
Martin Luther King criticizes the white moderate, whom the eight clergymen represents, for insisting that waiting for time to pass and insensitively obeying to order will resolve inequality. He says that he has been “gravely disappointed”to show his disagreement of the white moderates lukewarm attitude, because he was expecting them to sympathize with the African Americans and be actively involved in the process of desegregation.
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In Kings words, one of the expressions of this lukewarm attitude is that the white moderate deliberately postpones the process and outcome of African Americans defeating injustice. King phrases their delay in time as “fatalistically believe [they] can set the timetable or another men’s freedom” to condemn the careless and arbitrary nature behind the white moderates conduct of neglecting African Americans’ urgent need for racial equality.
At the end, Martin Luther King comes to the conclusion that “shallow understanding from people of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will”. He defines the white moderate as people with good will, which shows that King believes the white moderate, unlike those who are completely hostile to African Americans, are convenience, and they should be the allies of African Americans. Therefore, the white moderate should change their conventional and narrow minded beliefs and turn to accept the blacks actions devoted to push forward the spread of freedom.
To further enhance his argument, Martin Luther King responds to the Clergyman’s claim that the black citizens should obey “the principles of law and order” and their accusation that non- violent protests “incite to hatred and violence”. King reveals the tension created by the practice of unjust laws, and identifies that condemning non-violent protests for generating violence is an illogical assertion. He claims that his way of protesting merely bring to the surface the hidden tension that is already alive”which highlights the tension and conflicts caused by racial inequality is not a result of protesting peacefully.
King also compares the tension to a “boil”which implies the tension is like an disease , and it “must be opened with all its ugliness to the natural medicines of air and conscience”to be cured. He emphasizes that the avenging issue should be solved by exposing it to a national degree, and non-violence protest is the most appropriate method to bring it under the Judgment of the entire American public. King builds up his voice by making the connection of him and his communities’ protesting for equality to the “never-ceasing devotion to God’s will”.
Therefore, to condemn him protesting is no different than to condemn following God “precipitated the evil act of crucifixion”, which is morally incorrect. Through his strategies, Martin Luther King flawlessly presents his opinion that non-violent protesting is a Justified act to achieve freedom and equality for the blacks even though it disobeys the current laws. Above all, King stresses the importance of understanding time does not errant freedom unless people work relentlessly to make progress.
King states that the ” concerning time in relation to the struggle for freedom” is a “myth”to show the white moderates false assumption of time solves inequality is widely spread but untrue. Because the misfile is common, King introduces the concept that “human progress never rolls in on wheels of inevitability’ but ” comes through the tireless efforts of men”. He underscores that to achieve a desired result, men must cause the progress to developed in their expected way, which proves his argument that waiting s not enough to achieve racial equality, a remarkable “human progress”.
King also cautions that without immediate actions “time itself becomes an ally of the forces of social stagnation” to show that claiming protests to be “untimely actually the potential harm to the improvement of society. On the contrast, protesting is necessary because it is able to break “social stagnation”. King concludes that “time is always ripe to do right” ; thus, it is never untimely to practice non-violent protests in the intention of bringing good to the society.
Martin Luther King’s argument in his letter as not merely stirring to those involved in the Civil Right Movement in his time period, but has proven to have a prolong effect on America. African Americans has become equally accepted as the white race. Many descendants of the desegregation have fully achieved freedom and excelled in many fields. Without people like Marin Luther King who stood up and advocated for desegregation, there would not be the countless successful African Americans today. We not only admires his talent in persuasive writing, but more importantly, admire his brave soul for fighting injustice.