Australian History  

 Answer the questions: 1. What were the three main programs of the 1964 Freedom Summer? In the long historical view, which one (in your opinion) had the greatest impact and explain why. 2. In your opinion, what were the three most important provisions of the 1964 Civil Rights Act? Explain WHY. 3. What did the 1964 Civil Rights Act say about voting, and in what two ways did the 1965 Voting Rights Act improve on protections for Black voters? 4. Below is an excerpt from Dr. King’s speech at the end of the Selma to Montgomery march. Explain what he means about racism and the poor white man. If it may be said of the slavery era that the white man took the world and gave the Negro Jesus, then it may be said of the Reconstruction era that the southern aristocracy took the world and gave the poor white man Jim Crow. (Yes, sir) He gave him Jim Crow. (Uh huh) And when his wrinkled stomach cried out for the food that his empty pockets could not provide, (Yes, sir) he ate Jim Crow, a psychological bird that told him that no matter how bad off he was, at least he was a white man, better than the black man. (Right sir) And he ate Jim Crow. (Uh huh) And when his undernourished children cried out for the necessities that his low wages could not provide, he showed them the Jim Crow signs on the buses and in the stores, on the streets and in the public buildings. (Yes, sir) And his children, too, learned to feed upon Jim Crow, (Speak) their last outpost of psychological oblivion. (Yes, sir) 5. The Supreme Court’s 2013 decision in Shelby v. Holder eliminated the pre-clearance provision of the Voting Rights Act. What was pre-clearance and give two examples of things that have happened since it was eliminated?


Short-Structured Questions

Question 1 

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One of the 1964 freedom summer programs was to increase the number of black voters in Mississippi. The organizers hoped that with the increased number of voters who would register, the authorities would deny them a chance to vote and expose the injustice ( Editors, 2016). The other program was the setting up freedom schools where black people would be taught about politics and history. The third program was to set up community centers where educational and recreational services offered in black neighborhoods would be offered (Crosby, 2017). These community centers were to be started in existing buildings and in others that would be erected from scratch to serve the purpose.  

Among the three programs, voter registration was the most successful. Even though out of the 17000 black residents who tried to register as voters, only 1200 were successfully registered. The freedom vote that followed the denial of voter registration rights had a significant effect ( Editors, 2016). The move to hold a parallel election after they note allowed to register as voters was met with a brutal response from the people who supported the status quo. This caught international attention, and a lot of criticism was made, resulting in the civil rights act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (Crosby, 2017). The civil rights act catered for the other two programs, while the Voting right act gave black people the right to vote.

Question 2

In the civil rights act of 1964, the provisions that were the most important include; the one on voting rights, the prohibition against prohibition in public places, and the provision that bans the discrimination by trade unions, schools, and employers who were transacting businesses at interstate commerce or with the federal government (Crosby, 2017). The three were most critical as they tackled discrimination from a social and political perspective, assuring the black Americans freedom. 

Question 3

The voting rights given in Title I of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 included the provision that barred unequal application of voter registration requirements. The Act, therefore, required that all the voting rules and procedures be applied equally to all people (Crosby, 2017). Despite the efforts put in the Civil rights Act, it did not remove the voter qualification, which bared many people from the minority groups from participating in the electoral process. It did not prohibit the harassment or abuse of non-white voters by the police ( Editors, 2016). These two barriers were some of the problems that were solved in the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

Question 4

The excerpt from the speech begins with addressing racism through slavery, where the Whiteman took the world and gave black people religion to make them easy to rule. On the other hand, the poor white man was also handed the racial concept he clings on even when he is suffering in poverty. He always thinks that no matter how bad life is, he is better than the people of color due to his race.

Question 5

The preclearance provision of section 5 of the voting act required that any amendment of electoral laws of the covered territories not to be passed before they have been cleared by the attorney general or the district magistrate court for the District of Columbia (Brandeisky, 2015). As a result of the nullification of these provisions by the supreme court in 2013, Florida’s state has dropped the interstate cross-check program, which was aimed at barring double voter registration in two states. As a result of the ruling, online voter registration has been made available in more states.  



Brandeisky, K. (2015, November 4). Everything that’s happened since Supreme Court ruled on the Voting Rights Act

Crosby, E. (2017). Civil Rights Act and Voting Rights Act — Civil rights teaching Editors. (2016, January 4). Civil Rights Act of 1964