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The Fight For Equal Rights Essay

1518 words - 7 pages

As Americans, we are very grateful for all rights and privileges we have received in our world. One very important right we have received would be that everyone, no matter color, gender, or race, are treated equally. What are some events that lead to that? Rosa Parks, along with others, sacrificed their lives for us to have the equality we have today. The day Rosa Parks refused to move for a white man on the bus was the day the world saw this act differently. This was the day African Americans decided it was time for a change. This change started with a protest called the Montgomery Bus Boycott. The events all through this protest achieved many goals in the end and continue to impact lives today.
Rosa Parks is a US civil rights activist who served as secretary of the local chapel of the National Association of the Advancement of Colored People. She was born on February 4, 1913 in Tuskegee, Alabama. Rosa Parks was known as “The first lady of Civil Rights” (Teaching with Documents). Rosa also won the NAACP’s highest award. Rosa was experienced with early racial discrimination and activism for racial equality in her early childhood. Rosa grew up with completely segregated places. Blacks couldn’t use the same restrooms; attend the same restaurants or even schools. Black people simply were looked upon as “lower” people. White people were “better” than them and got treated that way. On December 1, 1955, the day Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat for a white man, Alabama’s bus went into a wide spread boycott.
The protest started on December 5, 1955 and it lasted 381 days.” African Americans represented at least 75% of Montgomery’s bus ridership.” (Montgomery Bus Boycott) Rosa Parks says, “I didn’t get on the bus with the intention of being arrested, I got in the bus with the intention of going home.” Almost all African Americans did what they were told and moved to the back of the bus for the white people. They knew their consequences would be severe if they did not. Many African Americans would have never done what Rosa chooses to do. In fact many African Americans hesitated to move for the white people but did. Many people considered Rosa Parks action as a folderol act. That day though, Rosa was sick of it. Her refusal to move resulted in an arrest which became a rally point. Rosa Parks:
I was arrested on December 1st, 1955 for refusing to stand up on the orders of the bus driver, after the white seats had been occupied in the front. And of course, I was not in the front of the bus as many people have written and spoken that I was -- that I got on the bus and took the front seat, but I did not. I took a seat that was just back of where the white people were sitting, in fact, the last seat. A man was next to the window, and I took an aisle seat. We went on undisturbed until about the second or third stop when some white people boarded the bus and left one man standing. And when the driver noticed him standing, he told us to stand up and let him...

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