Hastings’ Statement in Commemoration of Rosa Parks
Congressman Alcee L. Hastings (D-FL) made the following statement in commemoration of Rosa Parks on the anniversary of her historic refusal to give up her bus seat to a white passenger in Montgomery, Alabama on December 1, 1955:
“Fifty-nine years ago today Rosa Parks’ courageous refusal to give up her seat to a white individual on a segregated bus, and subsequent arrest, sparked a bus boycott that became one of the most significant milestones in the Civil Rights movement. It was Ms. Parks’ bravery and conviction to her cause that inspired citizens of Montgomery, Alabama to boycott bus transportation for 381 days, often times at great costs. Her actions were directly responsible for the U.S. Supreme Court’s eventual decision to ban segregation on public transportation and paved the way for the enactment of the landmark Civil Rights Act of 1964, which outlawed discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex or national origin and ended racial segregation in public facilities and accommodations.
“Today as we commemorate the life and dedication of the woman often called the ‘Mother of the Modern-Day Civil Rights Movement’ let us not forget to continue to serve not only ourselves, but also our community. Nearly six decades later, injustices continue to plague our society and more work must be done to ensure that all American’s enjoy equal rights under the law. Ms. Parks’ life and legacy are truly exemplary of what an ordinary citizen with extraordinary vision can do to change the course of a nation’s history and will continue to serve as inspiration for generations to come."
Congressman Alcee L. Hastings serves as Senior Member of the House Rules Committee, Ranking Democratic Member of the U.S. Helsinki Commission, and Co-Chairman of the Florida Delegation.