How does the Black Panther Party fit within the context of the Black Power Movement?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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The Black Power Movement rose out of something akin to a counter-response to the traditional approaches being offered by the Civil Rights Movement.  It was more activist, by nature, more driven by confrontation and more youthful.  The Black Power movement was animated more by an "all- Black" approach to social change, as opposed to the Civil Rights Movement that was more aligned with integrative solutions and synthetic work with White America.  The Black Power Movement was driven by the idea of "Freedom Now," and the spirit of this call yielded the Black Panthers.  This particular group was a group that was committed to monitoring police actions, particularly police brutality, in communities where people of color lived. The Black Panthers argued that a strongly vigilant group that was not afraid to embrace violence in the name of self- defense is what was required to protect African- American communities that were the target of either neglect by White authorities or abuse from them.  The Black Panther party became the most commonly associated offshoot of the Black Power movement and also representative of the ends to which the Black Power movement could go to ensure that its demands were being met and its calls for change were being heard.

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