STORIES
Peacemakers

Gandhi

by Casey from Cortez

A few drops of water will not dirty the whole ocean.
Mahatma Gandhi (Wikipedia)
Mahatma Gandhi (Wikipedia)

A problem pressing our world in the 20th Century was the oppression of Indians in South Africa and India. Racism is oppressing someone's race, color, or religion. For example, there was subjugation of Indians in South Africa and Gandhi used non violence, compassion and tolerance to protest against the oppression of Indians in South Africa and India.

Gandhi was born in Porbandar, India on October 2, 1869 to a wealthy family. Gandhi was trained in law in London at University College London. Gandhi returned to India in 1891 where he failed to successfully practice law. Gandhi moved to South Africa in 1893 where he became involved in advocating for the rights of Hindus in South Africa after suffering discrimination himself.

In 1907 the South African government enacted a law called the Asiatic Registration Law commonly known as the "Black Act" where Indians were made to carry registration papers with them all the times or they would be whipped, jailed or killed. Gandhi encouraged his followers to disobey the law by refusing to register or carry the registration cards. This protest continued for seven years until the South African government finally came to an agreement with Gandhi and his followers. During Gandhi's time in South Africa he began to clearly see where changes were needed in India.

Gandhi at the end of the Salt March (Wikipedia (Unknown))
Gandhi at the end of the Salt March (Wikipedia (Unknown))

Gandhi returned to India in 1915 with a reputation as a leader and organizer of people. From 1915-1920 Gandhi was very politically involved but in 1920 he moved out of politics and focused on using his non violent ways to "fight" against the British rule. In 1930 Gandhi organized the Salt March, a 241 mile march, to protest against the taxes on salt production and harvest by the British. Gandhi chose to protest against the taxes on salt because it affected all Indians, from the rich to the poor. While the march was successful, the British did imprison over 60,000 people.

Gandhi continued to work for the fair treatment of Indians both culturally and politically after the Salt March. On January 30, 1948 Gandhi, speaking before a prayer meeting, was assassinated by Nathuram Godse. Godse disagreed with what he believed Gandhi's position on Pakistan was and the idea of using non violence methods of protest. Gandhi's death affected the entire Indian nation and while it initially caused panic and chaos the Indian Congress was able to use the assassination to help finalize India's transition to an independent nation.

Page created on 5/22/2013 12:00:00 AM

Last edited 5/22/2013 12:00:00 AM

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