Violent Protests and Peaceful Protests

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What is the most effective way to solve a problem, violent protest or peaceful protest? These two ways of fighting have been used as a way of getting rid of a problem throughout the years, and we still haven’t made up our mind on which is the most effective. Some might take the M.L.K approach rather than others who may use the Boston Tea Party way of solving problems. On one side, those who support violent protests believe that it is the most effective way of causing change. On the other side, those who believe in peaceful protest are passionate about the fact that coming together as one and using our minds and voices can bring change much faster. Without a doubt, both can sway popular opinion, but at what cost? At the end of the day, can we bring change through using guns and fighting or is it easier and less stressful to do so by coming hand in hand to accomplish a common goal?

To begin, violence has been used as a driving force for America, for centuries now. Furthermore, since the days of tax representatives of the British parliament being tar and feathered, American citizens have been speaking with their hands when their voices were not being heard. Back in those times, change was coming by any means necessary. As a result, adjustments to American civil rights, specifically taxes without representations, would not be available to us today. In addition, riots have certainly spurred new comings in this country’s history as well.

For instance, the riots of Ferguson have indeed shed light on the injustices in our court systems today. To be specific, there was a bill passed that put a cap on the amount of money municipalities can collect from tickets. Some would say that if it weren’t for the rioting in Ferguson, this bill would have never been passed. To backtrack, when the Bostonians did attack those British officials, the crown was forced to retract all new taxes that didn’t have any representation. In result of the violent outcry of Boston citizens change came whether it hurt and angered people or not it got the job done. Violence is not always the most reasonable act, but sometimes it is the most necessary.

In addition, violence is the most effective way to spread the word for your cause. Whenever there is a social outcry about an issue violence, most of the time, is the first topic of discussion you see in your face either on the news or social media. Its interesting to see that people are willing to put their health at risk to fight for what they believe in. When news got out that Rodney King had been brutally beaten by the police of Los Angeles, the citizens of which took it to the streets. When people heard about the riots in LA and what the police had done, the breaking news spread like wildfire. Americans around the country came out to speak about the injustice that had occurred.

Even celebrities were forced to speak out about it, like reverend Al Sharpton, a symbol for black people in the early to mid-90s, who said that Rodney King was a symbol for civil rights. The events that took place pushed the issue that was police brutality into the world. Events like Ferguson and the LA riots were famous enough to reach the president and influential people around the world. They aren’t pretty, but they are imperative to the spreading of whatever is needed to bring justice to society. People need to see what injustices there are in the world, and what better way for them to see it then through major news outlets and everyone’s favorite source of receiving information, the internet.

First, violence is never the answer because there are consequences like, death and destruction. If you must kill someone or fatally injure them in order to get your point across, it most certainly is not the answer. When the Boston citizens took to the streets to fight for taxation with representation it resulted in in an event known as the Boston massacre. On March 5th, 1770, a group of angry citizens approached a British soldier. They were taunting and yelling at him, forcing his colleagues to come to his aid. There was a confused conflict in which the british soldiers started to open fire into the crowd. After everything was said I done, there were 5 americans shot and killed and 6 wounded. As you can see, this situation did not end well.

There were human beings who lost their lives in this horrific event. Moreover, in the riots of ferguson there was a lot of damage dealt to the community of ferguson. Over 25 businesses burnt down, 80 arrests and 1 death on the night of the riot. There is a way to get what you need to say out without dealing as much damage that was done and that’s through peaceful protest instead. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “Peace cannot be kept by force; it can only be achieved by understanding”. He proved that statement to be true with his peaceful protests throughout the 50s and 60s with his peaceful protests. Not only did he shape the future of African americans for decades after the civil rights movement was over, but his words are still used to influence change today.

Secondly, violence isn’t the most effective way to get the word out about your cause. Peace and nonviolent protest has also been proven to get the word out very quickly about social injustices today. Most recently, Colin Kaepernick and his kneeling during the American anthem. Kaepernick is a mixed African American/Caucasian football player who kneeled during the national anthem before a football game had started. He believed that the flag stood for a country that “oppresses black people and people of color”. The news of Colin Kaepernick sitting during the national anthem and his protest quickly spread throughout sports media outlets and all major platforms of social media, such as twitter, Instagram, etc.

His protest began to spread to not just players of other teams in the NFL teams but, players of other sports like, NBA basketball players LeBron James and John Wall. It tacked onto the already growing tension between cops and African Americans. While the LA riots did shed light on police brutality in the 90s, it also shed a dark light on the violence African americans are capable of. Those riots that night showed how ugly this country can get and how unnecessary the fighting and destruction was. 27 years later and researchers have found that little have changed in the affected areas in the aftermath of the riots. Not only did violence not improve anything but it made life for some already in poverty, lives worse.

In conclusion, coming together to reach a common goal, without violence, is the most reasonable way to protest. Not through senseless violence and causing millions of dollars’ worth of damage. To truly bring love and hope into the world is to show it as well. Showing love to those who need it most, showing love to those who showed hate first. Hence, you must take the M.L.K approach because his way has proven to be very effective. Just look at what he has done for black people over time and you will recognize that he has accomplished his goals more efficiently than you would by using violence. If we were to continue using violence as a means of protest our world would continue to be in turmoil. Spewing hate and death for more and more years to come.

Cite this paper

Violent Protests and Peaceful Protests. (2021, Aug 30). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/violent-protests-and-peaceful-protests/

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