Freedom Riders


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Freedom Riders,

American civil-rights demonstrators who engaged (1961) in nonviolent protests against segregation of public interstate buses and terminals in the South. From the 1940s several federal court decisions and an Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) order had ruled against such segregation. Nonetheless, it remained a fact of life in buses, trains, and terminals throughout the South. In May, 1961, 13 Freedom Rider volunteers, seven black, six white, and nearly all young, were recruited by the Congress of Racial EqualityCongress of Racial Equality
(CORE), civil-rights organization founded (1942) in Chicago by James Farmer. Dedicated to the use of nonviolent direct action, CORE initially sought to promote better race relations and end racial discrimination in the United States.
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 (CORE) to challenge state Jim Crow laws by riding buses together into the Deep South. Two buses set out to take them from Washington, D.C. to New Orleans. Serious violence erupted in Alabama when one bus was firebombed near Anniston, and riders in the other were badly beaten in Birmingham. While the original riders were forced to fly to New Orleans, waves of successive protesters followed them to integrate Southern buses. Many were injured, many forced to take refuge in local churches, and some 300 were arrested and held in Southern jails. Federal marshalls were sent to Montgomery and martial law was declared in the state. More riders continued to arrive, and within six months the Kennedy administration had taken action and the Freedom Rider movement had succeeded. The ICC outlawed segregation in interstate travel, the Supreme Court voided state segregation laws in public transportation, and segregation of such facilities in the South came to an end.

Bibliography

See J. Peck, Freedom Ride (1962); D. Halberstam, The Children (1998); R. Arsenault, Freedom Riders (2006); B. Watson, Freedom Summer (2010).

References in periodicals archive ?
The post Civil rights 'Freedom Riders' cherish MLK's lasting legacy appeared first on Cyprus Mail .
The panel featured Ray Arsenault, who wrote "Freedom Riders: 1961 and the Struggle for Racial Justice" that was the basis of the award-winning PBS program of the same name.
A screening area for a documentary on the Freedom Riders, narrated by Jeffrey Wright, is tucked behind the bus facade and features old school-bus benches on which the audience can sit.
From journeying with civil rights freedom riders to travelling into the heart of the South Wales coal-field to record a disappearing way of life, Davidson's lens has captured both revolutionary tumult and imperceptible moments of shift and decline.
"Ordinary people just keep getting stitched up by austerity," one fan of the Freedom Riders told me when I joined them on a march through Barnsley town centre.
Attorney General Robert F Kennedy responded by sending John Seigentha-ler, his assistant, to ensure that the Freedom Riders made it safely from Birmingham to New Orleans after the firebombing.
Frequently arrested, cursed, beaten, jailed and expelled from college before their efforts succeeded, the non-violent students became known as the Freedom Riders.
He was one of many white southerners who beat up the Freedom Riders, white and black young men who integrated bus services and bus stations throughout the south in the spring of 1961, and were often subjected to vicious beatings.
He left the paper to join let magazine and became involved with the civil rights movement, covering the Freedom Riders and the Emmett Till trial.
How does this song connect the biblical beginning with Paul and Silas to the contemporary experiences of the Freedom Riders? What, according to this song, is the prize, and where will it be found--here in America or on the other side of Jordan (in the next life)?
Just before Oprah Winfrey made the move to cable television from her popular national commercial broadcast syndication program in May 2011, she aired a show titled "American Heroes: The Freedom Riders Unite 50 Years Later." That program revisited events depicted in an award-winning PBS documentary "Freedom Riders." Guests were introduced as "heroes" but could have been termed "survivors" of that bloody era, when many Civil Rights activists were assaulted and some murdered.
One wove these themes into the powerful and visceral Mama Ya-Ya's girl, Lanesha (Ninth Ward, Jewell Parker Rhodes); another laced them into a pledge to not forget the sometimes-hushed song of all the Freedom Riders (Birmingham Sunday, Larry Dane Brimner).