English Essay Sample Paper on My Moral Hero: Martin Luther King Jr.

My Moral Hero: Martin Luther King Jr.

In the past, a “hero was a man of honor who died defending his/her country or loved ones” (Misra 75). The definition associates heroism with war and the eventual death of the hero. Today, a hero is seen as a person of distinguished ability and courage; he/she is admired for his/her noble qualities and deeds. Heroism exhibits itself in many ways today, one of them being moral heroism. A moral hero is a person who has or must have selflessly and deliberately upheld a virtue of moral nature, such as justice, patience, compassion, peace or love while aware of the risks and consequences of his/her actions.

Among the world’s most popular moral heroes is Martin Luther King Jr. He was assassinated for the virtues he upheld. Martin Luther King Jr. was greatly concerned about what he perceived as the maltreatment and oppression of African Americans by the rest of the United States’ society. He was born in a Christian family. He was fortunate, being an African American, to be highly educated. The education helped him shape his ideals in terms of his nonviolent protest against racism. In his expression of his disapproval of the maltreatment and oppression of black people, King exhibited qualities, such as peace, courage, equality, and resilience. One of his most outstanding qualities was his use of nonviolent methods to protest. Like India’s Mahatma Gandhi, King believed that the nonviolent approach was the most ethical, and the only form of protest that would be most effective. Furthermore, it was aligned with the Christian teaching he had been taught. In King’s own words, “’Christ furnished the spirit and motivation, while Gandhi furnished the method” (King et al. 423). In spite of the danger his life was always in (the bombing of his home and the harassment, arrests, and convictions of other MIA leaders) he maintained his loyalty to nonviolence.

Courage was also a quality that was embodied in Martin Luther King Jr. Despite the attacks in his home, he did not let go his dream. He was not afraid of fighting for the minority. He courageously fought for the rights of African American at the time when racism was very high in the United States, even though his life was under threat. For example, as a response to the white leaders’ refusal to negotiate desegregation, King and his followers led a nonviolent protest into the streets during which blacks were bitten by police dogs, and the white racists countered with bombing attacks (Segal 237). However, King courageously continued with his pursuit nonviolently.

Besides peace and courage, King also believed in equality. He believed that all people were equal; the black people were not inferior to white people. According to him, all people are equal before God. For that reason, it was not justified for white people to see themselves as superior to other races and use it a pretext to oppress other races.

Despite all the difficulties and the violent oppositions he faced, King showed a lot of resilience. He faced violent oppositions but they did not stop him carrying on peacefully. His life was always under threat and the progress was slow. He did not let anything deter his pursuit of what he believed in as a noble course.

Martin Luther King Jr. is a great hero. He peacefully fought for equality in spite of all the difficulties, oppositions, and attempts in his life. He died in the end. The authorities allegedly assassinated him, but his legacy lives on (Melanson 199). He greatly contributed to the elimination of discrimination, and reduction of racism in the United States. To me, the characteristics embodied in Luther King Jr. are characteristics that should be vivid in all human beings; they mean so much to me as they should to every other human being. King showed that to achieve something, courage and resilience, coupled with a peaceful rather than violent protest can accomplish something despite all the sorts of opposition one may face. His belief in equality of all races and cultures is something that appeals to all rational humans. Martin Luther King’s heroism lies in his uses his human nature to fight for the rights of the oppressed, and I find that to be a true inspiration.

Works Cited

King, Martin L, Clayborne Carson, Peter Holloran, Ralph E. Luker, and Penny A. Russell. The

 Papers of Martin Luther King, Jr. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1992. Print.

Melanson, Philip H. The Martin Luther King Assassination: New Revelations on the Conspiracy

 and Cover-Up, 1968-1991. New York: S.P.I. Books, 1994. Print.

Misra, Karuna S. The Tragic Hero Through Ages. New Delhi: Northern Book Centre, 1992.


Segal, Ronald. The Race War. London: Cape, 1966. Print.