Martin Luther King

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Martin Luther King

Martin Luther King, Jr. was born in 1929 in the USA. He was a pastor in the 1950s and 1960s. He fought for all people to have the same rights no matter what skin color they have or what religion they belong to. Back then people with black skin color in the USA didn’t have the same rights as people with white skin.

His father, Martin Luther King, Sr., was also a pastor. Although their names were originally Michael, after a visit to Germany, King's father began calling himself and his son Martin Luther after the famous reformer.

As a kid, because he had black skin, Martin Luther King was not allowed to, for example go to the same school as his best friend because his best friend had white skin. In buses people with black skin had to stand up when a person with white skin wanted to sit down. Also in a lot of places people with black skin were separated from people with white skin and were treated unfairly. That is called racial segregation. Because of that, people with black skin didn’t get the same chances as people with white skin. People who didn’t agree with this were sometimes hit, captured, taken away, or even killed by racists.

Martin Luther King wanted to finally stop this unfairness. Above all, he wanted to make his dream come true, to have everybody have the same rights and he wanted to do that in a peaceful way. So he demonstrated and soon he had more than 250,000 people with him. In Washington D.C., he gave a speech and the most famous phrase was: "I have a dream." This phrase became known worldwide. More and more black people and also white people believed in his dream and then in the year 1964 the USA decided that everyone should be treated equal. That was a big victory for Martin Luther King. In the same year he got the Nobel Peace Prize which is a very important prize.

But not all people thought his idea was good. Even though he always fought peacefully for his ideas, he sometimes had to go to jail. In 1969 he was killed by a white racist, but his dream lives on and continues to improve life for black people in the US.