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昨天足球体育比分:#214: The Civil Rights Movement

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Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. addresses marchers during his "I Have a Dream" speech at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. addresses marchers during his "I Have a Dream" speech at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington

STEVE EMBER: Welcome to THE MAKING OF A NATION - American history in VOA Special English. I'm Steve Ember.

Today, we tell about the movement for civil rights for black Americans.

(SOUND)

The day is August twenty-eighth, nineteen sixty-three. More than two hundred fifty thousand people are gathered in Washington. Black and white, young and old, they demand equal treatment for black Americans. The nation's most famous civil rights leader, the Reverend Martin Luther King Junior, is speaking.

MARTIN LUTHER KING: "I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as the greatest demonstration of freedom in the history of our nation."

(MUSIC)

Early in its history, black Africans were brought to America as slaves. They were bought and sold, like animals. By the time of America's Civil War in the eighteen sixties, many had been freed by their owners. Many, however, still worked as slaves on the plantations, or large farms, of the South. By the end of the war, slavery had been declared unconstitutional. But that was only the first step in the struggle for equality.

Most people of color could not get good jobs. They could not get good housing. They had far less chance of a good education than white Americans. For about one hundred years, blacks made slow gains. Widespread activism for civil rights did not really begin until after World War Two. During the war, black Americans earned respect as members of the armed forces. When they came home, many demanded that their civil rights be respected, too. An organization, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, led the way.

In nineteen fifty-one, the organization sent its lawyers to help a man in the city of Topeka, Kansas. The man, Oliver Brown, and twelve others had brought legal action against the city. They wanted to end racial separation in their children's schools. That policy was known as segregation.

At that time, two of every five public schools in America had all white students or all black students. The law said all public schools must be equal, but they were not. Schools for white children were almost always better than schools for black children. The situation was worst in Southern states.

The case against the city of Topeka -- Brown versus the Board of Education -- was finally settled by the nation's highest court. In nineteen fifty-four, the Supreme Court ruled that separate schools for black children were not equal to schools for white children. The next year, it said public schools must accept children of all races as quickly as possible.

(MUSIC)

Student Elizabeth Eckford and the angry crowd that followed her on September fourth, 1957
Student Elizabeth Eckford and the angry crowd that followed her on September fourth, 1957

In September nineteen fifty-seven, a black girl attempted to enter an all-white school in the city of Little Rock, Arkansas.

(SOUND)

An angry crowd shouted at her. State guards blocked her way. The guards had been sent by the state governor, Orville Faubus. After three weeks, a federal court ordered Governor Faubus to remove the guards. The girl, Elizabeth Eckford, and other black students were able to enter the school. After one day, however, riots forced the black students to leave.

President Dwight Eisenhower ordered federal troops to Little Rock. They helped black students get into the white school safely. However, angry white citizens closed all the city's public schools. The schools stayed closed for two years.

(MUSIC)

In nineteen sixty-two, a black student named James Meredith sought to attend the University of Mississippi. School officials refused. John Kennedy, the president at that time, sent federal law officers to help him.

James Meredith became the first black person to graduate from the University of Mississippi.

In addition to fighting for equal treatment in education, black Americans fought for equal treatment in housing and transportation.

(SOUND)

In many cities of the South, blacks were forced to sit in the back of buses. In nineteen fifty-five, a black woman named Rosa Parks got on a bus in the city of Montgomery, Alabama. She sat in the back. The bus became crowded. There were no more seats for white people. So, the bus driver ordered Missus Parks to stand and give her seat to a white person.

Rosa Parks is fingerprinted at a police station in Montgomery, Alabama, in nineteen fifty-five, after her arrest for refusing to give her bus seat to a white person
Rosa Parks is fingerprinted at a police station in Montgomery, Alabama, in nineteen fifty-five, after her arrest for refusing to give her bus seat to a white person

She refused. Her feet were tired after a long day at work. Rosa Parks was arrested.

MARTIN LUTHER KING: "For a number of years, Negro passengers on the city bus lines of Montgomery have been humiliated, intimidated, and faced threats on this bus line."

The Reverend Martin Luther King organized the black citizens of Montgomery. They were the major users of the bus system. They decided to stop using the buses.

MARTIN LUTHER KING: "At present, we are in the midst of a protest, the black citizens of Montgomery, representing some 44 percent of the population. Ninety percent, at least, of the regular Negro bus passengers are staying off the buses, and we plan to continue until something is done."

(MUSIC)

The boycott lasted a little more than a year. It seriously affected the earnings of the bus company. In the end, racial separation on the buses in Montgomery was declared illegal. Rosa Parks' tired feet had helped win black Americans another victory in their struggle for equal rights. And, the victory had been won without violence.

The Reverend King was following the teachings of former Indian leader Mohandas Gandhi. Gandhi urged his followers to reach their political goals without violence. One of the major tools of non-violence in the civil rights struggle in America was the "sit-in". In a sit-in, protesters entered a store or public eating place. They quietly asked to be served. Sometimes, they were arrested. Sometimes, they remained until the business closed. But they were not served. Some went hours without food or water.

(MUSIC: "Buses Are A-Coming")

Another kind of protest was the "freedom ride." This involved buses that traveled through states from the North to the South. On freedom rides, blacks and whites sat together to make it difficult for officials to enforce racial separation laws on the buses.

This Freedom Riders bus went up in flames when a fire bomb was tossed through a window near Anniston, Alabama in 1961
This Freedom Riders bus went up in flames when a fire bomb was tossed through a window near Anniston, Alabama in 1961

Many freedom rides -- and much violence -- took place in the summer of nineteen sixty-four. Sometimes, the freedom riders were arrested. Sometimes, angry crowds of whites beat the freedom riders.

(MUSIC)

Perhaps the most dangerous part of the civil rights movement was the campaign to win voting rights for black Americans. The Fifteenth Amendment to the Constitution said a citizen could not be denied the right to vote because of race or color. Several Southern states, however, passed laws to try to deny voting rights to blacks for other reasons.

Martin Luther King and his supporters demanded new legislation to guarantee the right to vote. They held protests in the state of Alabama. In the city of Birmingham, the chief law officer ordered his men to fight the protesters with high-pressure water hoses and fierce dogs.

People throughout the country watched the demonstration on television. The sight of children being beaten by policemen and bitten by dogs awakened many citizens to the civil rights struggle. Federal negotiators reached a compromise. The compromise was, in fact, a victory for the protesters. They promised to stop their demonstrations. In exchange, they would be permitted to vote.

(MUSIC: "The Freedom Train Is Coming")

President Lyndon Johnson signed a major civil rights bill in nineteen sixty-four. Yet violence continued in some places. Three civil rights workers were murdered in Mississippi. One was murdered in Alabama.

Martin Luther King kept working toward the goal of equal rights. On April fourth nineteen sixty-eight, he died working toward that goal.

King was shot to death in Memphis, Tennessee. He had gone there to support a strike by waste collection workers.

WALTER CRONKITE: "Doctor King was standing on the balcony of his second floor hotel room tonight when, according to a companion, a shot was fired from across the street. In the friend's words, the bullet exploded in his face."

CBS newsman Walter Cronkite.

WALTER CRONKITE: "The police, who have been keeping a close watch over the Nobel Peace Prize winner because of Memphis' turbulent racial situation, were on the scene almost immediately. They rushed the thirty-nine year old Negro leader to a hospital, where he died of a bullet wound in the neck."

A white man, James Earl Ray, was tried and found guilty of the crime.

(MUSIC)

A wave of unrest followed the murder of Martin Luther King. Blacks in more than one hundred cities in America rioted. In some cities, areas affected by the riots were not rebuilt for many years. The movement for civil rights for black Americans continued. But it became increasingly violent. The struggle produced angry, bitter memories. Yet it also produced some of the greatest words spoken in American history.

This August 28, 1963, file photo shows Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. waving to the crowd at the Lincoln Memorial for his "I Have a Dream" speech during the March on Washington
This August 28, 1963, file photo shows Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. waving to the crowd at the Lincoln Memorial for his "I Have a Dream" speech during the March on Washington

MARTIN LUTHER KING: "When we allow freedom to ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God's children -- black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics -- will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual: 'Free at last! Free at last! Thank God almighty, we are free at last!'"

(MUSIC)

Nest week, we continue the story of the United States in the nineteen sixties.

You can find our series online with transcripts, MP3s, podcasts and pictures at 球盘体育比分 www.341124.live. You can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter at VOA Learning English. I'm Steve Ember, inviting you to join us again next week for THE MAKING OF A NATION -- American history in VOA Special English.

----------

This was program #214.

1963年8月28日,超過25萬美國人在首都華盛頓舉行集會。白人、黑人、年輕的、年長的,他們聚集在一起,為非洲裔美國人爭取平等權益。美國最著名的民權運動領導人馬丁.路德.金發表講話說:"我很高興今天能夠加入你們的行列,這將成為我們歷史上最偉大的爭取自由的示威。"

最初,非洲人作為奴隸被賣到美國。他們像動物一樣被任意買賣。到1860年代美國內戰時,很多奴隸主已經將自由還給了他們。但是在美國南部,很多黑人仍然在大農場上像奴隸一樣工作。內戰結束時,林肯宣布奴隸制違憲。然而,這只是爭取平等的第一步。

有色人種很難得到好工作,不能租到好房子,與白種人相比,他們很難接受良好的教育。在之后的100年里,黑人在爭取權益方面沒有取得什么進步。大規模民權運動直到二戰后才逐漸展開。二戰期間,黑人作為軍人贏得了社會的尊重。退伍回家后,他們希望自己的民權也能得到尊重。一個叫做全國有色人種協進會的組織領導了美國的民權運動。

1951年,全國有色人種協進會派律師協助美國堪薩斯州托皮卡的一名男子。這名名叫奧利佛.布朗的男子連同其他12人一起,對托皮卡市提出起訴。他們希望結束學校里的"種族隔離制度"。

那時,美國五分之二的公立學校都是全白人學?;蛘呷諶搜?。法律上明文規定,公立學校必須平等對待所有學生,但實際情況并非如此。白人學校普遍比黑人學校要好,尤其是在美國南部。

布朗訴托皮卡市教育委員會這一案件最終被送往美國聯邦最高法院審理。1954年,美國最高法院裁決,黑人兒童就讀的隔離學校與白人兒童就讀的學校確實存在著不平等待遇。 第二年,法院要求公立學校必須盡快落實招收所有種族的兒童入學。

1957年9月,一名黑人小女孩想進入美國阿肯色州小巖城的一所白人學校就讀。結果一群白人憤怒地對她吼叫。阿肯色州警衛也堵著路不讓她進入。這些警衛是阿肯色州州長奧瓦爾.福布斯派去的。三周過后,一個聯邦法庭下令福布斯撤回警衛。這個叫伊麗莎白.??爍5碌男∨⒑推淥該諶誦『⒄獠漚肓蘇饉?。

然而,僅僅一天過后,暴力沖突就讓這些黑人孩子不得不離開了學校。艾森豪威爾總統派聯邦軍隊到小巖城維持秩序。軍隊幫助黑人孩子安全地回到這所白人學校。但是,惱怒的白人市民一氣之下關閉了這個城市所有的公立學校,一關就是兩年。

1962年,一個名叫詹姆斯.梅雷迪斯的黑人學生想就讀密西西比大學,遭到學校官員的拒絕。當時的總統約翰.肯尼迪派聯邦執法官員幫助他順利入學,使他成為第一位畢業于密西西比大學的黑人學生。

除了教育領域外,美國黑人也力求在住房和交通上獲得平等對待。當時在美國南部許多城市,黑人只能坐在公交車車廂的最后面。1955年,一位名叫羅莎.帕克斯的黑人婦女在阿拉巴馬州蒙哥馬利市坐公交車。當時她坐在最后一排。 然而,公交車上的人越來越多,最后有些白人沒地方坐了。于是,公交車司機讓帕克斯站起來,把座位讓給白人。帕克斯不同意。一整天的辛苦工作之后,她的腳很疼。羅莎.帕克斯因此被警察逮捕了。

馬丁.路德.金號召蒙哥馬利市的黑人公民團結起來,他們決定拒乘公交車,而這些黑人公民是這個城市公交系統的主要乘客。馬丁.路德.金說:"多年來,黑人乘客在蒙哥馬利市的公交車上受盡了屈辱和恐嚇,面臨諸多威脅。眼下,我們正在抗議,蒙哥馬利市黑人公民占整個城市人口的44%,90%使用公交系統的黑人市民目前都拒乘公交車。 我們將堅持抵制公交車,直到得到一個合理的交代。

抵制公交系統的活動持續了一年多,讓公交車公司的收入銳減。 最后,蒙哥馬利市宣布公交車上的種族隔離是違法的。羅莎.帕克斯疲倦的雙腳幫助美國黑人在爭取平等權利的事業中再下一城。更重要的是,這次勝利完全沒有發生暴力行動。

馬丁.路德.金是在學習印度前領導人甘地的方法。甘地勸說他的追隨者們采取非暴力不合作方式來達成政治目標。美國民權運動使用的一個最主要的非暴力途徑是靜坐抗議。靜坐抗議時,抗議者進入一個商店或公共餐飲場所,安靜地坐在里面,要求得到服務。有時候他們會被警方抓捕;有時候,他們會一直靜靜地待到打烊。但是他們根本不會得到任何服務。有些人在里面靜坐好幾個小時不吃不喝。

另外一種抗議形式叫做自由行。這種抗議活動涉及到自北向南穿過各州的公交車。在這些公車上黑人和白人坐在一起,讓政府官員無法執行種族隔離政策。1964年夏天,美國出現了很多自由行活動,這些活動比起靜坐來暴力得多。有時,參加自由行的游行者會被警方逮捕。有時,一些憤怒的白人還會成群結隊地攻擊這些游行者。

為黑人爭取選舉權應當是民權運動最危險的一個環節了。憲法修正案第十五條規定,不能因為公民的種族或膚色而剝奪他們的選舉權。然而,南部的幾個州又頒布了另外一些法案,試圖憑借其他一些理由來剝奪黑人的選舉權。

馬丁.路德.金和他的支持者們要求美國政府頒布新的立法,確保黑人的選舉權。 他們在阿拉巴馬州舉行抗議活動。伯明翰市警長下令使用高壓水槍和兇猛的警犬來鎮壓當地的抗議者。

全美國的人都在電視上關注這次示威游行。 兒童被警察毆打,被警犬撕咬的一些面畫讓很多美國公民都從中覺醒,并加入到民權運動的隊伍中。聯邦政府的談判代表做出了妥協。這個妥協實際上就是抗議者的勝利。根據妥協方案,抗議者們答應停止游行, 但交換條件是給予他們選舉權。

1964年,林登.約翰遜總統簽署了一項重要的民權法案。但是在某些地區,暴力事件還在不斷上演。三名民權工作者在密西西比遭到謀殺。另外一人在阿拉巴馬州被謀殺。民權領袖馬丁.路德.金一直為了公民的平等權利不懈努力。1968年4月4號,他為民權運動獻出了自己的生命。

馬丁.路德.金在田納西州的孟斐斯市被人槍殺。他去那里是為了聲援當地廢品收集工人的罷工。哥倫比亞廣播公司新聞主播沃爾特.克朗凱特報道說:"當時馬丁.路德.金博士正站在他下榻的飯店二樓的陽臺上,這時街對面有人向他開槍。據當時他身邊的友人透露,子彈打在了他的臉上。由于孟菲斯混亂的種族局勢,當局派警察對這位諾貝爾和平獎得主進行嚴密?;?。槍擊事件發生后,警察立刻出現在現場。他們火速將這位39歲的黑人領袖送往醫院,而馬丁.路德.金最終因為脖子中彈而離開了人世。"

馬丁.路德.金的死引起大規模的社會動蕩,黑人暴動遍及一百多個城市,有些城市遭到的破壞很多年都沒有得以重建。為黑人爭取平等權益的民權運動沒有停止,而且暴力程度日益升級。這一運動給人們留下了憤怒和痛苦的記憶,但是同時,它也在美國歷史上留下了很多偉大的演講詞。

馬丁.路德.金說:"當我們讓自由之聲響起,讓自由之聲在每一個大大小小的村莊、每一個州、每一個市都響起來的時候, 我們就能加速那一天的到來─所有的上帝之子,無論黑人還是白人,無論猶太人還是異教徒,無論新教徒還是天主教徒, 都能手拉手一起歌唱著古老的黑人靈歌:我們自由啦!我們自由啦!感謝萬能的上帝,我們終于自由啦!"

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