MLK Jr. Responds
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. wrote a clear, concise, and argumentative response to the charges made upon him by the Alabama clergymen by writing the Letter from a Birmingham Jail. In his Letter, King answered their criticisms of his work and ideas with patient and reasonable terms. King does not seem short-fused or vehement in this letter; he is calm and collected in his firm response to the clergymen. Also, in his letter his tone was strong, but neither violent nor threatening towards the clergymen. Similarly, King portrays a sense of concern for the clergymen and they ways in which they are willing to obtain the peaceful ends they seek. He senses the still-present fear of the white community in the letter of complaints from the clergymen. King was offended by how the clergymen only planned on addressing the African American community for their actions while letting the whites go on with their violent and oppressive actions. Dr. King fought his whole career for equality amongst the races, meaning all communities with violent, racist actions should be addressed. The clergymen presented Dr. King with a list of arguments they had against him; he responded to these in his Letter from a Birmingham Jail. A few of the arguments King responded to from the clergymen were to have local solutions to local problems; to pursue justice in the courts, not the streets; and to keep peace, law, and order among all.
The clergymen of Alabama were clearly against any outsiders coming into their territory. They had called Dr. King an outsider to the Birmingham community. The clergymen stated, “However, we are now confronted by a series of demonstrations by some of our Negro citizens, directed and led in part by outsiders;” they were accusing King of being one of those outsiders who had led the demonstrations. But, King was invited by a local organization in Birmingham to help negotiate issues. He was not, by any means, an outsider to the...