Sunday, October 24, 2010

Remembering... Rosa Parks

Rosa Parks, the mother of the American civil rights movement, died on this day in 2005, nearly fifty years after refusing to give up her seat at the front of a bus in Montgomery, Alabama.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketThe ensuing Montgomery Bus Boycott polarized the nation, in much the same way the murder of Emmett Till did, demonstrating once and for all the evil inherent in 'race' prejudice. Said Parks of the incident:

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 forty-two. No, the only tired I was, was tired of giving in.

The seat Parks refused to give up was not a whites-only seat, but rather in the front row of the 'colored' section.

Within the five days between her arrest - for 'disorderly conduct' - and trial, the boycott was planned, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. got involved, and soon the entire story was front-page news, not the first time Southern bigotry made news around the world, and certainly not the last.

The legacy of the soft-spoken seamstress and her so-called disorderly conduct must never be forgotten, affecting (and effectively disordering) an endemic system of segregation which denied the fruits of the American Dream to untold millions of people simply due to the colour of their skin.
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