Influencing the World with Non-Violence
Fighting is defined as using violence in a time of conflict, but two great men come to mind when the idea of fighting without violence occurs: Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. Both of these men fought for equality throughout a nation, prohibiting segregation, and overall human rights.
Along with other nations, India was once ruled by the British Empire. Also comparable to other nations, India began to rebel against the British Empire. The main political leader of this pursuit was none other than Gandhi himself, and his approach to resisting the unwanted influence was that of boycotting goods and institutions run by Britain. For this act and similar others, Gandhi was sentenced to prison, but still continued his vow to non-violence and did not protest the order.
Gandhi fought for equality with India as a nation, but also for equality within the nation. After India earned its freedom from Britain the country entered turmoil with the Hindu and Muslim populations. A partition was created, which divided the nation in two: today known as India and Pakistan. This divide separated family members, and with extreme difficulty to obtain a visa, most people knew they would never see their family again. Gandhi was completely against this partition and did everything in his power to stop its creation; he even fasted to the point of near death in order to make the battles between Calcutta and Delhi cease. Eventually, the people softened and ended their battles in fear of losing Gandhi. Through these acts of non-violence, Gandhi became a role model for India, and other nations worldwide.
Some say Gandhi’s philosophies carried on into the future by influencing other great activists. One man in particular, Martin Luther King Jr., is also well known for his non-violent protests. MLK fought for equality amongst all people, and is most popularly known for his “I have a Dream” speech. Like Gandhi, MLK had affects on people that were unexplainable, and he used this authority in the best way imaginable.
Encouraging equality and human rights through non-violence caused the greatest of changes to be made in India, America, and all over the world by the ways of Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. Unfortunately, both of these men left their legacies by a familiar fate: murder. Gandhi was assassinated on January 30th, 1948, and just a bit more than twenty years later Martin Luther King was assassinated on April 4th, 1968.
However, the beliefs of these men live on. Each leader has a day in this honor, but more importantly the ideas they spread and died for are still very much alive. The affect Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. had on the world is immense, and we would not be living in the world we do if it wasn’t for them.