Rosa Parks Courage

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Rosa Parks Courage



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Parks was charged with a violation of Chapter 6, Section 11 segregation law of the Montgomery City code, [43] although technically she had not taken a white-only seat; she had been in a colored section. Parks did not originate the idea of protesting segregation with a bus sit-in. Robinson believed it important to seize the opportunity and stayed up all night mimeographing over 35, handbills announcing a bus boycott. The Women's Political Council was the first group to officially endorse the boycott.

On Sunday, December 4, , plans for the Montgomery bus boycott were announced at black churches in the area, and a front-page article in the Montgomery Advertiser helped spread the word. At a church rally that night, those attending agreed unanimously to continue the boycott until they were treated with the level of courtesy they expected, until black drivers were hired, and until seating in the middle of the bus was handled on a first-come basis. The next day, Parks was tried on charges of disorderly conduct and violating a local ordinance. The trial lasted 30 minutes. I did not want to be mistreated, I did not want to be deprived of a seat that I had paid for. It was just time I had plenty to do without having to end up in jail. But when I had to face that decision, I didn't hesitate to do so because I felt that we had endured that too long.

The more we gave in, the more we complied with that kind of treatment, the more oppressive it became. The handbill read,. We are You can afford to stay out of school for one day. If you work, take a cab, or walk. But please, children and grown-ups, don't ride the bus at all on Monday. Please stay off the buses Monday. It rained that day, but the black community persevered in their boycott. Most of the remainder of the 40, black commuters walked, some as far as 20 miles 30 km. That evening after the success of the one-day boycott, a group of 16 to 18 people gathered at the Mt. At that time, Parks was introduced but not asked to speak, despite a standing ovation and calls from the crowd for her to speak; when she asked if she should say something, the reply was, "Why, you've said enough.

The group agreed that a new organization was needed to lead the boycott effort if it were to continue. Its members elected as their president Martin Luther King Jr. That Monday night, 50 leaders of the African-American community gathered to discuss actions to respond to Parks' arrest. She was securely married and employed, was regarded as possessing a quiet and dignified demeanor, and was politically savvy. King said that Parks was regarded as "one of the finest citizens of Montgomery—not one of the finest Negro citizens, but one of the finest citizens of Montgomery".

Parks' court case was being slowed down in appeals through the Alabama courts on their way to a Federal appeal and the process could have taken years. In the end, black residents of Montgomery continued the boycott for days. Dozens of public buses stood idle for months, severely damaging the bus transit company's finances, until the city repealed its law requiring segregation on public buses following the US Supreme Court ruling in Browder v. Gayle that it was unconstitutional. Parks was not included as a plaintiff in the Browder decision because the attorney Fred Gray concluded the courts would perceive they were attempting to circumvent her prosecution on her charges working their way through the Alabama state court system.

Parks played an important part in raising international awareness of the plight of African Americans and the civil rights struggle. King wrote in his book Stride Toward Freedom that Parks' arrest was the catalyst rather than the cause of the protest: "The cause lay deep in the record of similar injustices. Parks unless he realizes that eventually the cup of endurance runs over, and the human personality cries out, 'I can take it no longer. After her arrest, Parks became an icon of the Civil Rights Movement but suffered hardships as a result. Due to economic sanctions used against activists, she lost her job at the department store.

Her husband lost his job as a barber at Maxwell Air Force Base [59] after his boss forbade him to talk about his wife or the legal case. She also disagreed with King and other leaders of Montgomery's struggling civil rights movement about how to proceed, and was constantly receiving death threats. Later that year, at the urging of her brother and sister-in-law in Detroit , Sylvester and Daisy McCauley, Rosa and Raymond Parks and her mother moved north to join them.

The City of Detroit attempted to cultivate a progressive reputation, but Parks encountered numerous signs of discrimination against African-Americans. Schools were effectively segregated, and services in black neighborhoods substandard. In , Parks told an interviewer that, "I don't feel a great deal of difference here Housing segregation is just as bad, and it seems more noticeable in the larger cities. Parks rendered crucial assistance in the first campaign for Congress by John Conyers. She persuaded Martin Luther King who was generally reluctant to endorse local candidates to appear with Conyers, thereby boosting the novice candidate's profile. She held this position until she retired in There was only one Rosa Parks.

She visited schools, hospitals, senior citizen facilities, and other community meetings and kept Conyers grounded in community concerns and activism. Parks participated in activism nationally during the mids, traveling to support the Selma-to-Montgomery Marches , the Freedom Now Party, [16] and the Lowndes County Freedom Organization. She also befriended Malcolm X , who she regarded as a personal hero. Like many Detroit blacks, Parks remained particularly concerned about housing issues. She herself lived in a neighborhood, Virginia Park, which had been compromised by highway construction and urban renewal. By , these policies had destroyed 10, structures in Detroit, displacing 43, people, 70 percent of them African-American.

Parks lived just a mile from the center of the riot that took place in Detroit in , and she considered housing discrimination a major factor that provoked the disorder. In the aftermath Parks collaborated with members of the League of Revolutionary Black Workers and the Republic of New Afrika in raising awareness of police abuse during the conflict. She served on a "people's tribunal" on August 30, , investigating the killing of three young men by police during the Detroit uprising, in what came to be known as the Algiers Motel incident. The council facilitated the building of the only black-owned shopping center in the country. She also supported and visited the Black Panther school in Oakland.

In the s, Parks organized for the freedom of political prisoners in the United States, particularly cases involving issues of self-defense. The s were a decade of loss for Parks in her personal life. Her family was plagued with illness; she and her husband had suffered stomach ulcers for years and both required hospitalization. In spite of her fame and constant speaking engagements, Parks was not a wealthy woman. She donated most of the money from speaking to civil rights causes, and lived on her staff salary and her husband's pension. Medical bills and time missed from work caused financial strain that required her to accept assistance from church groups and admirers.

Her husband died of throat cancer on August 19, , and her brother, her only sibling, died of cancer that November. Her personal ordeals caused her to become removed from the civil rights movement. She learned from a newspaper of the death of Fannie Lou Hamer , once a close friend. Parks suffered two broken bones in a fall on an icy sidewalk, an injury which caused considerable and recurring pain. She decided to move with her mother into an apartment for senior citizens. There she nursed her mother Leona through the final stages of cancer and geriatric dementia until she died in at the age of In , Parks—widowed and without immediate family—rededicated herself to civil rights and educational organizations.

She co-founded the Rosa L. Parks Scholarship Foundation for college-bound high school seniors, [70] [71] to which she donated most of her speaker fees. In February , she co-founded, with Elaine Eason Steele, the Rosa and Raymond Parks Institute for Self Development , an institute that runs the "Pathways to Freedom" bus tours which introduce young people to important civil rights and Underground Railroad sites throughout the country.

Parks also served on the Board of Advocates of Planned Parenthood. Unrelated to her activism, Parks loaned quilts of her own making to an exhibit at Michigan State University of quilts by African-American residents of Michigan. In , Parks published Rosa Parks: My Story , an autobiography aimed at younger readers, which recounts her life leading to her decision to keep her seat on the bus.

A few years later, she published Quiet Strength , her memoir, which focuses on her faith. At age 81, Parks was robbed and assaulted in her home in central Detroit on August 30, The assailant, Joseph Skipper, broke down the door but claimed he had chased away an intruder. He requested a reward and when Parks paid him, he demanded more. Parks refused and he attacked her. Hurt and badly shaken, Parks called a friend, who called the police.

A neighborhood manhunt led to Skipper's capture and reported beating. Parks was treated at Detroit Receiving Hospital for facial injuries and swelling on the right side of her face. Parks said about the attack on her by the African-American man, "Many gains have been made But as you can see, at this time we still have a long way to go. Suffering anxiety upon returning to her small central Detroit house following the ordeal, Parks moved into Riverfront Towers , a secure high-rise apartment building.

Learning of Parks' move, Little Caesars owner Mike Ilitch offered to pay for her housing expenses for as long as necessary. Louis , for cleanup which allowed them to have signs stating that this section of highway was maintained by the organization. Since the state could not refuse the KKK's sponsorship, the Missouri legislature voted to name the highway section the "Rosa Parks Highway". When asked how she felt about this honor, she is reported to have commented, "It is always nice to be thought of.

In , Parks filmed a cameo appearance for the television series Touched by an Angel. Parks was incapable of managing her own financial affairs by this time due to age-related physical and mental decline. When her rent became delinquent and her impending eviction was highly publicized in , executives of the ownership company announced they had forgiven the back rent and would allow Parks, by then 91 and in extremely poor health, to live rent-free in the building for the remainder of her life. Elaine Steele, manager of the nonprofit Rosa and Raymond Parks Institute, defended Parks' care and stated that the eviction notices were sent in error.

In , Parks' former residence in Detroit was threatened with demolition. A Berlin-based American artist, Ryan Mendoza , arranged to have the house disassembled, moved to his garden in Germany, and partly restored. It served as a museum honoring Rosa Parks. Brown University was planning to exhibit the house, but the display was cancelled. Parks died of natural causes on October 24, , at the age of 92, in her apartment on the east side of Detroit.

She and her husband never had children and she outlived her only sibling. She was survived by her sister-in-law Raymond's sister , 13 nieces and nephews and their families, and several cousins, most of them residents of Michigan or Alabama. City officials in Montgomery and Detroit announced on October 27, , that the front seats of their city buses would be reserved with black ribbons in honor of Parks until her funeral. Parks' coffin was flown to Montgomery and taken in a horse-drawn hearse to the St. Paul African Methodist Episcopal AME church, where she lay in repose at the altar on October 29, , dressed in the uniform of a church deaconess.

A memorial service was held there the following morning. One of the speakers, United States Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice , said that if it had not been for Parks, she would probably have never become the Secretary of State. In the evening the casket was transported to Washington, D. Since the founding of the practice in , Parks was the 31st person, the first American who had not been a U. She was the first woman and the second black person to lie in honor in the Capitol.

With her body and casket returned to Detroit, for two days, Parks lay in repose at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History. Her funeral service was seven hours long and was held on November 2, , at the Greater Grace Temple Church in Detroit. After the service, an honor guard from the Michigan National Guard laid the U. As the hearse passed the thousands of people who were viewing the procession, many clapped, cheered loudly and released white balloons. Parks was interred between her husband and mother at Detroit's Woodlawn Cemetery in the chapel's mausoleum. The chapel was renamed the Rosa L. Parks Freedom Chapel in her honor.

By placing her statue in the heart of the nation's Capitol, we commemorate her work for a more perfect union, and we commit ourselves to continue to struggle for justice for every American. President Barack Obama sitting on the bus. Parks was arrested sitting in the same row Obama is in, but on the opposite side. The No. Rosa Parks Railway Station in Paris. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. African-American civil rights activist — For other uses, see Rosa Parks disambiguation. Tuskegee , Alabama , U. Detroit , Michigan , U. Raymond Parks. Rosa Parks' arrest. Booking photo of Parks following her February arrest during the Montgomery bus boycott. Fingerprint card of Parks from her arrest on December 1, Parks being fingerprinted by Lieutenant D. Lackey on February 22, , when she was arrested again, along with 73 other people, after a grand jury indicted African Americans for organizing the Montgomery bus boycott [31] [32].

Main article: Montgomery bus boycott. Parks and U. President Bill Clinton. United States portal Indigenous peoples of the Americas portal Biography portal. Odom of Mississippi, an escaped slave who lived through the years of Reconstruction and segregation. Retrieved November 13, The quoted passages can be seen by clicking through to the text or PDF. National Archives. August 15, Retrieved December 1, Democracy Now! Pacifica Radio. Retrieved April 18, Archived from the original on May 23, Retrieved February 5, Weekend Edition Sunday. June 13, ProQuest The Washington Post.

Retrieved December 11, Rosa Parks. ISBN Retrieved July 1, Archived from the original on July 4, Retrieved September 2, October 25, The New York Times. Retrieved January 1, In MacDowell, Marsha L. African American Quiltmaking in Michigan. OCLC Retrieved October 12, Rosa Parks: Tired of Giving In. Rosa Parks Bus. The Henry Ford. The Washington Post Magazine. Archived from the original on August 5, Retrieved July 19, The Rebellious Life of Mrs. Beacon Press. The Montgomery Bus Boycott. Gareth Stevens. The Boston Globe. Retrieved July 31, Retrieved August 1, Retrieved December 22, We're History. December 1, Retrieved March 10, Tell Me More. National Public Radio.

February 16, United States Department of Justice. May 10, Retrieved May 27, Alexander Acosta, Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division, states, "This brutal murder and grotesque miscarriage of justice outraged a nation and helped galvanize support for the modern American civil rights movement. Black Maverick: T. Urbana: University of Illinois Press.

Rosa Parks". May 16, Retrieved September 11, Gayle , F. The Guardian. March 26, Retrieved December 27, Los Angeles Times. Retrieved July 22, New York Daily News. The Associated Press. February 23, December 5, Press Herald. Archived from the original on December 5, Retrieved September 16, Rosa Parks recalls many black soldiers returning to the South after World War I, expecting respect and equality:. Other people would just pick them up and bury them. The young couple married in and became involved in the Scottsboro Defense. The case contested the death sentences of nine African-American boys and men, none over the age of 20, accused of raping two white females. The meetings were held secretly because of the great risk of harm to those who protested the death sentences.

Though it took decades to release the last of the Scottsboro nine, Rosa and Raymond Parks continued to be active in the movement. The last Scottsboro prisoner was released in Rosa and Raymond Parks were involved in organizing Voter League meetings, and encouraged their friends and neighbors to register to vote. Like the Scottsboro meetings, these meetings were held secretly because of violence aimed at activists. In that role, she took statements of people who were victims of sexualized violence and researched their cases.

In she went to Abbeville, Ala. Taylor was abducted and raped by six white men while coming home from church with two other church members. The courage of Rosa Parks and many others, including her friend Johnnie Carr, was shown in continuing this work, where those known to be involved received multiple death threats. Parks first met the bus driver James F. Blake in , according to McGuire. Twelve years later, on December 1, , Parks, distracted, got on the bus with Blake again.

On that day, she was arrested and the Montgomery Bus Boycott was born. White women activists in Montgomery were involved with the Montgomery Bus Boycott. Virginia Durr, a prominent white liberal and eventual employer of Parks, who was an excellent seamstress, mentored Parks by encouraging her to attend the Highlander Folk School in Monteagle, Tenn. Though first developed to address oppressed workers in the Appalachian mountains, by the s the school had evolved into a training ground for civil rights activists.

The summer before the Montgomery Bus Boycott, Parks attended a workshop there. It was a place I was very reluctant to leave. I gained strength there to persevere in my work for freedom, not just for blacks, but all oppressed people. Robinson had also been the victim of a vicious verbal attack by a Montgomery bus driver, who stood over her and pulled his arm back as if to strike her. Robinson points out the unequal racial treatment on Montgomery buses, which led to the abuse and arrest of Rosa Parks and many others:. The front ten double seats on each bus out of a total seating for thirty-six were reserved for whites, whether there were enough whites riding the bus to occupy them or not. Even when no whites were aboard, those seats were reserved, just in case one or two did ride.

In many instances black riders had to stand over those empty seats. Since about 70 percent of all bus patrons were black, especially on certain buses and in certain areas, it seemed to many riders that the reservation of seats was unnecessary. The day-to-day injustices and emotional trauma on Montgomery buses led to community conflict, including domestic violence, juvenile delinquency, and dependency abuses.

The WPC, led by Robinson, received more than 30 complaints against the Montgomery City Lines bus company, with some going as far back as From to , Robinson worked with other activist women, including A. West, N. Burkes, J. In May 21, , Robinson sent a letter to Mayor W. She was an enormous inspiration to the African American Race. She was one among many who lived in a rough time for African Americans. However, Rosa Parks was an individual who stood up for herself. Rosa Parks helped the. In , Rosa challenge the ridicule law of segregation in Montgomery, Alabama. Her actions help start a revolution, the Civil Right Movement. Park was a brave women, and she as Mr. She was the plaintiff he was looking for, Rosa was different than the other people that refuse to give put their sit before her.

Rosa park act of bravery was. African-American seamstress in Montgomery, Alabama, refused to give up her seat on a city bus to a white passenger. Just wanting to get home after a long day at work, Rosa Parks may not have been planning to make history, but her defiance spurred a movement that advanced our journey toward justice and equality for all. Though Rosa Parks was not the first to confront the injustice of segregation laws, her courageous act of civil disobedience sparked the Montgomery Bus Boycott -- days of peaceful. Hope gives one the ability to believe in something that haven't happened.

Faith in something that's not there but you have hope it will. Courage is strength in the face of pain or grief with the hope of change. A little hope gives someone the ability to do something that frightens one but accomplish much. An act of hope of change is what Rosa Parks displayed in Barack Obama about Rosa Parks and her accomplishments. The texts showed that he had a positive opinion about Rosa Parks and everything she did for the civil rights movement. She refused to give up her seat on the bus to a white man and ended desegregation. This goes to show that one small act may have large and far-reaching effects.

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