Happy Rosa Parks Day is a historical holiday in honor of Parks, a civil rights icon who gained nationwide notoriety for her sit-in walk from segregated bus stops in Montgomery, Alabama to promote equal rights for blacks. Rosa Parks was arrested after refusing to give up her seat to white passengers on the bus. This event became a major turning point in the history of civil rights and was later recognized as a national day.
Rosa Parks Day commemorates the first day that Rosa Parks was allowed to ride in a white bus in Montgomery, Alabama. Parks had been arrested and charged with disturbing the peace and should have been placed in jail, but she was permitted to go home that night. Parks died in an automobile accident on the way home, making this the first day in over fifty years that an African American was killed in a car accident in the United States.
Rosa Parks Day has grown over the years to become a celebration that is inclusive of various groups and individuals who have fought for equal opportunities for African Americans in all walks of life. On this day, children, students, teachers, clergy members, business leaders, and other individuals who were involved in the fight for civil rights can take part in activities and events. Some of these activities may include an afternoon tour of historic African American neighborhoods, historical landmarks, or a trip to a historically significant park or museum.
When Date is Rosa Parks Day 2023: Wishes, Celebrations, Status, Quotes & Greetings
Others may include literature readings, performances by local groups or individuals, history buff attractions, guest speaker events, cookouts, and family gatherings. Church leaders, who were active participants in the Civil Rights Movement, are also encouraged to attend events on Rosa Parks Day.
In reaction to the unjust arrest of Rosa Parks, hundreds of thousands take part in activities, marches, and demonstrations throughout the nation to celebrate this day known as “Rosa Parks Day”. On this day in Ohio, marchers headed from theitol in Columbus to theitol in Cleveland. Thousands of people joined demonstrations by wearing white shirts and hats to show their support for Parks. Demonstrations were organized around the country to mark Parks’ arrest and demonstrations were held in major cities including New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles. Parks was arrested while riding on a bus in Cleveland after being denied entry to a public bus.
Parks was a twenty-one-year-old woman who had attended St. Louis University and she was riding home on the bus when she was stopped and arrested. Parks was seated conveniently beside a white male in the back seat. When the white police officer caught Parks trying to enter the bus she was immediately arrested. Parks never made it to her destination and spent the night in jail. This marked the beginning of the end of Martin Luther King’s non-violent campaign for social change.
Rosa Parks Day Quotes
- “I would like to be remembered as a person who wanted to be free…so other people would also be free…”
- “Differences of race, nationality or religion should not be used to deny any human being citizenship rights or privileges…”
- “I have learned over the years that when one’s mind is made up, this diminishes the fear; knowing what must be done does away with fear…”
- “The only tired I was, was tired of giving in…”
- “You must never be fearful about what you are doing when it is right…”
- “Each person must live their life as a model for others…”
- “I knew someone had to take the first step and I made up my mind not to move…”
- “From the time I was a child, I tried to protest against disrespectful treatment…”
- “Memories of our lives, of our works and our deeds will continue in others…”
Parks was a strong symbol of resistance to the unjust treatment of African Americans in America. Many who were arrested that day refused to be cuffed and placed in jail simply because they were sitting in the same seat as King. Some were even willing to get handcuffs on and sit in the chair alongside King. The fact that Parks was sitting in the same seat with Martin Luther King, despite the fact that she had been arrested for peacefully exercising her right to freedom of speech, made many wonders if she might have been guilty of trespassing, which is what happened to Parks. There have been many debates over whether Parks would have been convicted if she had not refused to give up her seat on the bus.