Day 100: Rosa Parks

The blog civildisobedience 100 has reached its 100th post in 100 days — profiling Rosa Parks, the 42 year old African Amercian woman who sat at the front of the bus and became a leader in the civil rights movement. Remarkable, that such a “simple” gesture could take her from polite and oppressed follower to national leader. Remarkable to think how much courage it took to take that seat. Of her powerful and visible protest, Parks said, “I’d see the bus pass every day. But to me, that was a way of life; we had no choice but to accept what was the custom. The bus was among the first ways I realized there was a black world and a white world.”) Congratulations, civildisobedience100! Read more of these blogs — they’re a powerful testimony to civil disobedience across the globe and over the last century. Following up on yesterday’s blog about viral art movements and revolutionary leadership, this 100th blog seemed appropriate as a tribute both to the power of civil disobedience that creates courageous leaders out of invisible followers, and a testimony to the impact of the knowledge-sharing power of the blogging world.


100 Rosa Park
On December 1, 1955, Rosa Parks, a 42-year-old African American woman who worked as a seamstress, boarded this Montgomery City bus to go home from work. On this bus on that day, Rosa Parks initiated a new era in the American quest for freedom and equality.

She sat near the middle of the bus, just behind the 10 seats reserved for whites. Soon all of the seats in the bus were filled. When a white man entered the bus, the driver (following the standard practice of segregation) insisted that all four blacks sitting just behind the white section give up their seats so that the man could sit there. Mrs. Parks, who was an active member of the local NAACP, quietly refused to give up her seat.

Her action was spontaneous and not pre-meditated, although her previous civil rights involvement and strong sense of justice were obvious influences. “When I…

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