The Accomplished Life of Thurgood Marshall

By Kellar Ellsworth
Even Marshall's exalted status as a civil rights leader understates his importance and impact. (history)

The slow disassembling of America’s racism owes a great deal of gratitude to one man, not Martin Luther King Jr., but Thurgood Marshall. The lawyer, activist, and eventual Supreme Court Judge helped turn the tide for civil rights as much as any human being in American history. Brown v. Board of Education headlines an endless list of legal battles Marshall successfully waged.

The breadth and scale of his impact simply beggars belief. Furthermore, as a black man born in 1908, Marshal literally risked his life for the cause but also walked the straight and narrow to absolute perfection. If he had ever so much as stepped a toe out of line, you can be assured some racist politicians with closets full of skeletons would have pulled him down, purely on account of his race.