Making a Change: Historical Connections

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Protesting for Right

"Somewhere I read that the greatness of America is the right to protest for right."
— Martin Luther King Jr., April 3, 1968

Welcome! Use this timeline to explore how people have used their First Amendment rights to make or prevent change across the United States.

  • Click on an image to reveal text and see more photos, videos and newspapers from that event. Then browse using the forward and backward arrows or click "Start Over" to return to a view of all events.
  • Use the filters to find events about specific civil rights issues (legal, social or economic), people, or places.
  • As you read, look for the First Amendment rights in parentheses to see how Americans from all walks of life used freedom of religion, speech, press, assembly and petition to fight for and against change.
  • After you explore, click here to learn how you can submit your own events to share the story of civil rights in your community.

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