MATTHEW ANGLE’s Response to the Little Rock 9
I think that the question ‘how do the choices of individuals and groups shape history?’ is a very important question, yet one hard to fathom. It is pretty broad and general after all. I mean there are a lot of ways that someone or some people can shape history by their choices, but there are more specific ways and I think that if one is to ponder this question deeply enough, it will be rather easy to break down.
This (question) can easily fall into the choices made in the incident of Little Rock 9, that took place in Little Rock, Arkansas in 1957. Truthfully I think that the entire act of Little Rock 9 falls under that question (above). Really everything that happened there was a strong decision that, once made, had to be followed. The mob of white people angry because nine intelligent black teenagers were going to attend Little Rock’s Central High really draws a picture of what I would call ‘extremely extreme racism’.
On top of that I have to say that it was all very unnecessary, but we are talking about the south in the 50’s so what would you expect, people would likely revolt and riot against nine black kids entering a white school. It was horrible.
The thing that leads into the beginning question was the one important move those nine kids made. They chose to move forward and go to the school. Not only were they smart, they were brave too. To be a black person in the south in the 50’s and walk in front a mob of white people, who, if they could, would kill you, takes a little more than a lot of courage. They want to go to school and be educated and be done with segregation. Another person who made an important choice and put their foot down was the former President Eisenhower who employed federal troops to stop the racist mob, going against the governor of Arkansas’ beliefs. Sometimes it is not an act that makes up choices; sometimes it is choices that make up an act.