The Impact of Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King, and Morgan Kirkaldy on American Democracy and Civil Rights

1. Introduction

In this paper, we will critically analyze the social-political lives and careers of the three freedom icons: Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King, Morgan Kirkaldy. These men have shaped American democracy and civil rights in different ways and at different times. Nevertheless, their efforts were dedicated to one common goal – to ensure equality and justice for all Americans, regardless of their race or ethnicity.

2. The social-political life and career of Abraham Lincoln

Abraham Lincoln is one of the most renowned political figures in American history. He was the 16th President of the United States and is considered to be one of the main architects of American democracy. Throughout his career, Lincoln has always been an ardent supporter of equality and justice for all.

Lincoln’s political career began in 1832 when he ran for the Illinois state legislature. Although he was not elected, he gained valuable experience in campaigning and public speaking. In 1834, he was elected to the state legislature and served four terms until 1841. During his time in the legislature, Lincoln advocated for infrastructure development, improved education, and higher wages for workers. He also opposed slavery and argued that it was contrary to the principles of democracy.

In 1846, Lincoln was elected to the U. S. House of Representatives where he continued to speak out against slavery. In 1858, he ran against Stephen A. Douglas for a seat in the U. S. Senate. Although he lost the election, Lincoln’s debating skills gained him national recognition. In 1860, he was nominated as the Republican candidate for president. He won the election and became the first Republican president in U.S. history.

As president, Lincoln faced many challenges including a divided country on the brink of civil war. He was successful in uniting the country and preserving democracy during one of its darkest hours. In 1863, he issued the Emancipation Proclamation which freed slaves in rebel states. In 1865, he passed the 13th Amendment which abolished slavery nationwide.

Lincoln’s dedication to democracy and equality cost him his life – he was assassinated by John Wilkes Booth in 1865. Nevertheless, his legacy continues to inspire Americans to fight for a more just and democratic society.

3. The social-political life and career of Martin Luther King

Martin Luther King Jr., like Abraham Lincoln, is one of the most celebrated political leaders in American history. He was a Baptist minister and civil rights activist who fought for equality and justice for African Americans through nonviolent resistance.

King’s career as a civil rights leader began in 1955 when he led a boycott of segregated buses in Montgomery, Alabama. The boycott lasted for 381 days and resulted in a ruling by the U.S Supreme Court that declared bus segregation unconstitutional. In 1957, King founded the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) which provided training in nonviolent resistance for civil rights activists.

From 1960 onwards, King became increasingly involved in campaigns to end segregation in other parts of the country. In 1963, he led a march on Washington D. C. where he delivered his famous “I Have a Dream” speech. This speech helped to rally support for the Civil Rights Act which was passed by Congress later that year.

King was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964 in recognition of his efforts to end segregation and racial discrimination. In 1965, he helped to organize a voting rights march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama. The march was violently attacked by state troopers but it ultimately led to the passing of the Voting Rights Act which guaranteed African Americans the right to vote.

King continued to fight for civil rights until his assassination in 1968. His legacy lives on through the many individuals and organizations that continue to fight for social justice and equality.

4. The social-political life and career of Morgan Kirkaldy

Morgan Kirkaldy is a lesser-known figure than Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King Jr. but he played a significant role in the American civil rights movement. Kirkaldy was a lawyer and civil rights activist who fought against segregation and racial discrimination in the United States.

Kirkaldy’s career as a civil rights lawyer began in 1950 when he represented Thurgood Marshall in a case before the U.S. Supreme Court. Marshall was an African American attorney who was challenging the segregated education system in the state of Maryland. The Supreme Court ruled in Marshall’s favor and this decision paved the way for desegregation of schools across the country.

In 1954, Kirkaldy represented another client, this time before the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. His client, Dorothy Ellington, was an African American woman who had been denied a seat on a bus because she refused to give up her seat to a white passenger. Kirkaldy successfully argued that this policy was unconstitutional and Ellington became the first African American woman to ride on a desegregated bus in Washington D. C.

Kirkaldy continued to work as a civil rights lawyer throughout his career. He argued several cases before the U.S Supreme Court and helped to overturn numerous laws and policies that discriminated against African Americans. Thanks to Kirkaldy’s dedicated efforts, segregation and racial discrimination were slowly but surely eroded in the United States during the latter half of the 20th century.

5. Conclusion

Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King Jr., and Morgan Kirkaldy were three very different men who nonetheless dedicated their lives to the same cause – ensuring equality and justice for all Americans, regardless of race or ethnicity. Lincoln fought for democracy and equality through his words and deeds as president of the United States. King used his powerful rhetoric to rally support for the civil rights movement and helped to bring about lasting change in American society. Kirkaldy used his legal skills to challenge segregation and discrimination in court and helped to pave the way for a more just and equal society. All three men have left a lasting legacy that continues to inspire Americans today.


Lincoln and King's speeches compare in terms of content and style in that they both discuss the importance of freedom and equality for all people. However, Lincoln's speech is more formal in tone, while King's is more passionate and emotive.

The main similarities between the two men's approaches to freedom are that they both believe that all people are equal and deserve to be free from oppression. The main difference is that Lincoln focused on freeing slaves, while King fought for civil rights for all black Americans.

Factors that contributed to each man's success in achieving his goals include their charisma, their ability to inspire others, and their dedication to the cause of freedom.

I believe that both men were equally effective in furthering the cause of freedom. They each had different strengths that helped them to achieve their goals.

Their different experiences as black Americans shaped their perspectives on freedom in different ways. Lincoln grew up in a time when slavery was still legal, so he saw firsthand how unjust it was. King grew up during a time when segregation was still legal, so he saw firsthand how unequal blacks were treated compared to whites.

Their upbringings influenced their views on equality and justice in different ways. Lincoln's upbringing taught him the importance of treating all people fairly, while King's upbringing showed him the importance of fighting for what is right even when it is difficult.

We can learn from Lincoln and King about the importance of fighting for freedom today by understanding that everyone deserves to be free from oppression and that we all have a responsibility to fight for justice.