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Throughout American history, different groups of citizens have fought for rights that the American Constitution gave them. The civil rights movement in the United States is about the campaign of African Americans. Because of their skin color, they did not have the same rights that white people did for a long time. This injustice on African Americans led to a time of social unrest. In the 1950's and 1960's, blacks rose up to fight against the social systems and public authorities that had taken these rights away. Many whites supported their campaign. After the Civil War (1861-65), slavery was ended and African Americans were made citizens and got the right to vote. However, there was so much prejudice against blacks that these new laws were often ignored. In the southern states many laws were passed that separatedblacks from whites in public. They were treated as second class citizens. The modern civil rights movement began in the 1950s. In 1955, a black woman in Alabama named Rosa Parks refused to give her seat on a bus to a white man. For this act of protest, Parks was arrested. The blacks no longer wanted to "sit at the back of the bus," and started a boycott of the bus system. They chose a young minister, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., to lead their protest. The Montgomery boycott was very important for the African Americans. It encouraged them in other cities to protest for civil rights. Dr. King was a great spokesperson who spoke out on radio and television programs and urged blacks to take part in so-called freedom rides and sit-ins. Dr. King and thousands of others were often put into prison for these protests. On August 28, 1963, more than 200,000 Americans of all races gathered at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. Their goal was to urge the government to take action against racial discrimination and segregation Dr. King surprised the
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