Black History Month and the “Mother of Civil Rights”

by Alison Cundiff

Resource Development Executive

Black History month is a time where we as a nation, and as individual communities, celebrate the achievements and contributions of African Americans in America’s history.  Growing up in school, February was dedicated to learning about slavery, the Civil Rights Movement, and various historical figures such as Booker T. Washington, Jackie Robinson, and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. But there is one is one story that I always loved hearing about and that is the story of Rosa Parks.

Rosa Parks is considered the “mother of the civil rights movement” because of her refusal to give up her seat to a white male on a Montgomery bus in 1955. This action sparked Martin Luther King Jr. to call a boycott on the bus system in Montgomery which lasted for over a year. Eventually, the bus system’s segregation policies were ruled unconstitutional under the 14th Amendment’s equal protection clause. This incident was just the first of many boycotts and protests that would eventually lead to the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and various other acts that guaranteed African American’s equal protection under the law.

To think that the courageous and bold actions of one woman could lead to gaining more freedoms for so may people is inspiring. It can serve as a reminder to each of us to be bold and stand up for what we believe in. Most of us probably won’t ever face arrest or death for standing up for what is right, but the impact of our small daily actions can add up and have a lasting effect on future generations.

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