Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Response to Rosa Parks Article

I agree with this article in its entirety. Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King, and other movers and shakers of the Civil Rights Movement have been canonized and included in a watered down national narrative of the struggles of African Americans in the United States. We recognize Rosa Parks for her heroic stand against racial segregation in public places. We recognize Martin Luther King for his eloquent speeches and marches that kept morale for the achievement of civil rights exceptionally high. We recognize the Black Panther Party and the Nation of Islam for their promotion of militancy and black nationalism. Nonetheless, all the people that contributed to the fight for equality contributed so much more than the box American likes to place them in. We have to move past Rosa Parks sitting in her seat, she got up a long time ago. Human Rights icons and activists can be acknowledged for so much more than what we choose to recognize them for. Rosa Parks was not an old, tired woman that was too fatigued to rise from her seat because of a long day of work. She was a feisty, strong, social justice leader who dedicated many years of her life to the Civil Rights Movement. Unfortunately, we never get to hear this narrative. The educational system tends to keep lessons taught on the Civil Rights Movement short, sweet, and to the point. Regrettably, the struggle for Civil Rights cannot be kept short, and in doing so you create a false idea of what the Civil Rights Movement actually was. It is a major part of American History and we should work towards embracing it in its entirety, whether good or bad.

Recent historians, editors, and journalist  interested in the study of the modern-day Civil Rights Movement have started to speak out more on the fraudulent national narrative of the movement American Society has deemed to be acceptable. Years after the end of the movement, we have obtained so much more knowledge concerning its frontrunners and their hard work; therefore it makes little since to continue to preach the same ole’ tunes.  Do you feel as though America has placed the Civil Rights Movements and its prominent leaders during that time in a box? Is it even necessary to try to re-write the narrative of a movement that existed in the past? How can we climb out of its constraints? 

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