ROSA PARKS (1913-2005)

~ New  posts will be added throughout the month of February ~ 

** Today (February 4th) is Rosa Parks’ birthday! **

Rosa Parks was a civil rights activist. In 1955, she was arrested for refusing to surrender her seat to a white passenger on a segregated bus in Montgomery, Alabama. Her defiance sparked the Montgomery Bus Boycott. Its success launched nationwide efforts to end racial segregation of public facilities.

Contrary to what many have heard and been taught over the years about this story, she wasn’t ‘too tired’ or ‘too old’ to get up. Textbooks and documentaries have long portrayed her as a quiet, docile, tired and much older woman (at the time of incident). This is incorrect.

“People always say that I didn’t give up my seat because I was tired, but that isn’t true…”

“…I was not tired physically, or no more tired than I usually was at the end of a working day. I was not old, although some people have an image of me as being old then. I was 42. No, the only tired I was, was tired of giving in.” Rosa Parks explains in her 1992 book, Rosa Parks: My Story.

Parks received many accolades during her lifetime, including the NAACP’s highest award – the Spingarn Medal, the prestigious Martin Luther King Jr. Award, the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the Congressional Gold Medal.

In February 2013, President Barack Obama unveiled a statue (designed by Rob Firmin and sculpted by Eugene Daub) honoring Parks in the Capitol building.

“In a single moment, with the simplest of gestures, she helped change America and change the world…”  -President Barack Obama

See her speak about what happened:

 

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