Thursday, February 24, 2011


Black woman challenges race law

A black woman has been arrested by police in Montgomery, Alabama, after refusing to give up her seat on the bus to a white person.

Mrs Rosa Parks now faces a fine for breaking the segregation laws which say black Americans must vacate their seats if there are white passengers left standing.

It is not the first time Mrs Parks, who is a seamstress, has defied the law on segregation.

In 1943 she was thrown off a bus for refusing to get on via the back door, which was reserved for black passengers. She became known to other drivers who sometimes refused to let her on.

Read the rest of the article here.


  • What are your thoughts after reading this article? 
  • Would you have done the same if you had been in Rosa’s shoes?
  • What should a group of people do if they face a similar type of oppression in the future? (Think of race, social class, religion, gender.)


  1. Question 1
    After reading this article, I feel really strange but also impressed by her attitude. By the reaction she had, she seems that she had already understood that every individual has the same rights. She lived in a decade, in which black people were faced as slaves. Black people were working really hard in constructions, industries, and then they had no rights even in the bus. Rosa Parks realized that these laws should change if they wanted to have a better life and a better treatment from the others. After all these, I wonder: if Rosa had not refused to give her seat, would anyone else have done the same so as to change the laws about Human Rights?

    Question 2
    In the past years, minorities were not allowed to have an opinion, or any rights. White people treated them as slaves, and no one could react. If I had been in Rosa’s shoes, I might have not had the same attitude in this incident. I would be afraid of the consequences. But if something like this happened today, I would have a totally different reaction. I would demonstrate for the rights because today most people understand that no one should be judged by their race or religion etc.

    Question 3
    If somebody faces a similar type of oppression, people should act in the same way as Rosa Parks. They should rebel. Nowadays, because of the globalization, most of us have learnt how to co-exist with other people despite their diversity and we do not have so serious incidents as in the past. Nevertheless, if anyone behaves badly to people from a different race, social class or religion, they will stand up for their rights more easily than it happened about 60 years ago. This happens because of the European Court of Human Resources which tries to protect human rights and freedom, but also tries to eliminate discrimination.

    Finally if anyone is interested, you will find Rosa's interview about this incident in the following link:

  2. Helen, once again, you have done a great job! I loved your answers, but, most of all, the link you provided! Keep up studying, Helen and you will reap the benefits soon enough! :0)

  3. QA
    After reading this article about Mrs Parks political action, I confirmed in my mind the following. When you are faced with a social problem that involves a big part of the society the solutions come always from organized collective actions. But every collective action is reinforced by the individual action of each who face the social problem. That is exactly that Mrs Parks has done with her action. She did not came up with the problem alone, she knew that it was impossible but she gave her individual fight against the racial discrimination in her every day life and strengthened with her action the collective fight against racism.

    In our days, we are all in the same position as Mrs Parks in a way. Racial discrimination may be the least of the social problems although that some racists and fascists insist stupidly in this way. The main problem ( it was certainly the same when Mrs Parks faced racism) is the social injustice caused by the existence of social classes. I really can not imagine what I would have done if I had been in her shoes because we can not talk hypothetically for the past. Today I am convinced that I must be opposed to this kind of social discrimination and fight collectively with the majority of people to change it.

    Societies definitely face oppression in our days. We can not talk about a group of people but the majority of people all over the world. This is the result of the existence of social classes. That means that all the wealth produced by the hands of the working class is taken and is converted into profit by a minority elite. This fact apparently cause discrimination and injustice and will probably lead to a revolution itself. To get over social oppression there must be a radical change to the economical system that will be placed from the socialization of the production process and that can be only done by the will of working class.

  4. Bravo to all my amazing bloggers who never hesitate to express their opinion! I hope you enjoyed this as much as I did! :)

  5. Question A

    I just finished reading the above article; I am absolutely struck by Rosa Parks’ political and social action. Rosa Parks was a poor woman without particular education who took the risk of standing up for colored men’s human rights. A day like any other one, she broke the law by refusing to offer her seat to a white man. That act was very impressive and brave, because she did not only resist to an unfair law, defying a tough punishment, but also a social movement broke out in Alabama which claimed social and civil equality of black men. Lastly, I firmly look up to her, because she was a woman who loved freedom and struggled for people’s social justice.

    Question B

    It is not too difficult for me to make up my mind. Yes, if I were Rosa Parks, I would disapprove social and civil injustice which we all also tackle today. What is more, If I were in her shoes, I would defy a shameless law, breaking that and defending my and my fellow citizen's rights to lead a dignified life. It is also clear that I would propose to boycott all public transport. Furthermore, I would set up a human rights’ organization so as to join our voices and to fight hard for a better future. Therefore, I strongly believe that all people are equal regardless of their race, gender or religion. We should all eliminate discriminations which come from intolerance of an amazing world’s diversity. Have a look at the human aspect of the natural environment!!

    Question C

    I am firmly convinced that people should revolt against social and civil injustice so as to defend their right of an honest life. The state laws are not always fair, but they favor the wealthy, do they not? People, who undergo discriminations and the state violence, are poor, immigrants, homeless and senile, coming from working class or a rural area. They have been working hard for years, but they will never strike it rich. The same state provokes friction between human beings so as to impose its laws and, thus, favor the capitalists. Therefore, that is the only true source of inequality’s vicious circle which raises thorny questions.