Segregation and the Civil Rights Movement Questions and Answers

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What caused civil unrest in America in the 1950s and 1960s?

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There were several factors leading to civil unrest in the United States in the 1950s and 1960s. One of these factors was tied to discrimination and segregation in the South. Throughout the South, whites and blacks were not equal. Jim Crow laws segregated the races in most areas of public life. There were separate schools, separate seating sections on buses and trains, and separate drinking fountains, just to name a few examples. These facilities were supposed to be equal but usually weren’t. Blacks were also being denied the right to vote. As a result, black people in the South began to demand equality. There were marches and protests. Many times, these turned violent because of the actions of the white people....

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Civic unrest in the US during the decades of the 1950s and 1960s was caused chiefly by discrimination. African American did not have the same rights as whites. For example, people of color were not allowed in schools that catered to only white children, they could not sit in the same restaurant or on the same bus seat. All this led to unrest in the African American community. Actually, the decade of 1950s was much more peaceful and the most prominent unrest was the incident at Little Rock, Arkansas where the president had to intervene to ensure the integration of nine african american students in a white only school. 

The decade of the 1960s saw much more unrest due to the Civil Rights movement and in part due to America's failure in Vietnam. The unrest was reinforced by the assassinations of John F Kennedy and Martin Luther King.