Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Michigan Teen Pays Tribute To Rosa Parks

Tara Brooke Stacey, a YJI writer from Michigan in 2005, visited the Ford Museum on a class field trip. A couple weeks later, Rosa Parks died. Tara wrote this tribute for YJI that we think is worth repeating on this 55th anniversary of the day Parks was willing to be arrested to advance civil rights in America.

October 31, 2005
Sitting in Rosa Parks' seat on The Bus
By Tara Brooke Stacey
Sitting in my American history class last Monday talking to my friend Courtney, I noticed my teacher passing around a worksheet about civil rights. This was odd to me, considering we were studying the Gold Rush just the week before.
After everyone in the class received a paper, my teacher, Ms. Lentz, explained to us that just that morning, Rosa Parks had died.
As I heard her say that, an image popped into my head. It was “The Bus.”
“The Bus” made Parks the mother of the civil rights movement.
Less than two weeks ago, my history class took a field trip to the Henry Ford Museum. There, I took a tour of “The Bus” and literally sat in the seat that this courageous woman refused to give up for a white man on that cold winter day of Dec. 1, 1955.
The tour guide said the museum bought the bus not too long ago on eBay!
Of course he gave us a speech about all of Parks' greatest achievements and awards. Then he mentioned that she was still alive, living in Detroit at the age of 92.
I thought to myself, what an awesome woman. She was so well known just for doing what any brave African American would have done.
Parks, who went to jail for standing up for what she believed in, is a woman I now call my hero.

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