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King aroused controversy throughout his tumultuous public career. Some laws denied blacks access to government services for which they were forced to pay taxes.
This required considerable courage since he was jailed 14 times, he was the target of countless death threats, he was stoned, he was stabbed, his home was blasted by a shotgun, his home was bombed, and a motel room where he stayed was bombed, too, before he was assassinated. King exposed the outrageous corruption of Southern sheriffs, mayors and governors.
They approved of police attacking peaceful demonstrators with cattle prods.
They unleashed ferocious police dogs and aimed high pressure water hoses at children. King’s most fundamental principles harked back to the natural law tradition: there are moral standards for judging the legitimacy of laws.
Inspired by American individualist Henry David Thoreau and Indian nonviolent crusader Mohandas Gandhi, Dr.
provided crucial moral leadership for eradicating government-enforced racial segregation in the United States.