August 28, 1963: 55th Anniversary of the March on Washington

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March on Washington, Black History, 1963, 1941, A. Philip Randolph, Martin Luther King Jr. Civil Rights

1963

On this day in 1963, a pivotal moment in the Civil Rights Movement took place: the March on Washington. This march is most famous for its conclusion. The congregation of civil rights activists marched the streets of Washington, D.C. and ended their protest just before the Lincoln Memorial. There, Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. gave his iconic I Have A Dream speech. But did you know that the 1963 March on Washington was not the first incarnation of the protest?

The 1940s

In the early 1940s, the Black community expressed contempt toward the hypocrisy of the American government. While the U.S. claimed to fight Hitler and his fascist Nazis for democracy’s sake, the U.S. military was segregated. Denying its own citizens equal opportunities within the military countered its mission against Nazis fascism. When famed civil rights activist A. Philip Randolph became aware of the Black community’s discontent, he proposed a radical form of protest.

MOWM

In 1941, Randolph, president of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters, proposed a national march on Washington. The idea was to organize as many protesters as possible to march on the nation’s capital. In order to do so, organizers had to take a grassroots approach when recruiting protesters. In addition to recruiting protesters, Randolph emphasized the importance of solely placing Black people in charge of this protest. Effective organization of the protest required the establishment of the March on Washington Movement (MOWM). MOWM, March On Washington Movement, Black activist, Civil Rights Movement, Buy Black Movement, We Buy Black The mission behind MOWM was to put pressure on then-president Franklin D. Roosevelt to desegregate the U.S. military. Prospective protesters signed up to join the movement. Soon there were over 100,000 protesters ready to march. Despite the number of protesters, Randolph embellished, claiming to have nearly 300,000 protesters ready to march. He stated that the number was larger in order to apply more pressure on the government.

FEPC

The march was scheduled to take place on July 1, 1941. A week prior, however, Roosevelt issued Executive Order 8802, which established the Fair Employment Practices Committee (FEPC). The military was ultimately desegregated. Although the MOWM had accomplished its mission to desegregate the military, the organization remained intact in order to ensure that the FEPC would uphold its mission to desegregate the workforce. But the MOWM began losing long-time supporters, like the NAACP because of their “Black-only” approach to political organization.

Impact

MOWM ultimately provided blueprints for the 1963 March on Washington. The 1963 March on Washington is also known as the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. Like the first March on Washington, Randolph played a major role in the organization of the 1963 march as well. Nearly 250,000 protesters joined in this march and all listened eagerly to MLK give his final speech. Mudcloth, We Buy Black, Buy Black Movement, Civil Rights, Black Movements

Buy Black

Black people today are descendants of the March on Washington protesters. Today, our protests are often countered and/or ignored by the U.S. government. The best form of protest today is to keep our dollars in our community longer. In order to do so, We Buy Black has spearheaded the Buy Black Movement. To honor the 1963 March on Washington, the MOWM, and civil rights activism in its entirety, we’ve compiled a “starter kit” for all new Buy Black Movement activists:

1. Mudcloth

For many people, fashion is important. Not only can fashion convey certain aspects of your personality, but it can also express your cultural identity. We Buy Black offers a wide array of Dashikis. You can choose from Dashikis with the traditional print or you can purchase this Mudcloth. Mudcloth comes in so many beautiful prints. This unisex Mudcloth Dashiki has a basic print utilizing black, brown, and white fabric to create this traditional African shirt. Click here to order your Mudcloth today.

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2. Jewelry

Now that you have your traditional African Mudcloth, you need the right piece of jewelry. Start with this brown wooden Ankh set. This beautifully crafted wooden charm is complemented by wooden beads that form the chain. To sweeten the deal, you’ll also get a matching bracelet. As you can see, this jewelry set will mesh perfectly with the Mudcloth shirt that I hope is already in your We Buy Black shopping basket. Click here to place this set in your basket right now. But don’t check out yet. There are a couple more items for you to purchase.

March on Washington, Black History, 1963, 1941, A. Philip Randolph, Martin Luther King Jr. Civil Rights, Ankh, jewelry set, necklace, bracelet

3. Freedom Is A Constant Struggle

Malcolm X advised that you should never join an organization until you know what it stands for. The same goes for joining any movement. After reading Freedom Is A Constant Struggle by Angela Y. Davis, you’ll understand why it’s important to join a movement that you believe in. It may also provide clarity as to which movement may be the best one for you. Click here to order your copy of Davis’ book now. March on Washington, Black History, 1963, 1941, A. Philip Randolph, Martin Luther King Jr. Civil Rights, Black book, Angela Davis, Cornell West, Black writer,

4. WBB T-shirt

Once you’ve decided to join the Buy Black Movement, what better way to express your political stance than with the We Buy Black T-shirt? Not only will you be announcing that you are a proud member of the Buy Black Movement, but you’ll also be supporting a Black-owned business. Click here to choose your size and pick from either black or white. Join the movement today! March on Washington, Black History, 1963, 1941, A. Philip Randolph, Martin Luther King Jr. Civil Rights, We Buy Black, Buy Black Movement]]>

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