News / USA

Civil Rights Pioneer Rosa Parks Honored with Capitol Statue

US Civil Rights Pioneer Honored With Capitol Hill Statuei
X
February 28, 2013 12:25 AM
A civil rights pioneer, and her groundbreaking action, were remembered by President Obama and lawmakers on Capitol Hill on Wednesday. They honored the late Rosa Parks with a full-sized statue of her in the Capitol Building. VOA's Chris Simkins has more on the story.

US Civil Rights Pioneer Honored With Capitol Hill Statue

Chris Simkins
A civil rights pioneer, and her groundbreaking action, were remembered by President Obama and lawmakers on Capitol Hill on Wednesday.  They honored the late Rosa Parks with a full-sized statue of her in the Capitol Building.

It's a lasting tribute to Rosa Parks -- known as the mother of the U.S. civil rights movement.

Dignitaries gathered to unveil  a nearly three-meter-tall bronze sculpture of Parks in the U.S. Capitol's Statuary Hall.  It honors the African-American woman who changed American history in 1955 when she refused to move to the back of a segrated bus.

"We celebrate a seamstress slight in stature but mighty in courage. She defied the odds, and she defied injustice," Obama said.

President Obama paid tribute to her courage.

"Rosa Parks' singular act of disobediance launched a movement.  And that is why this statue belongs in this hall to remind us no matter how lofty just what it is that leadership requires, what citizenship requires," Obama said.   

It's the first full-size statue of an African-American woman in the Capitol.  It recognizes Park's signature achievement, her rejection of racial segregation in the south in the 1950s.  Congressman James Clyburn said Parks holds a rightful place among the other titans of American History also on display.

"This statue forever ordains Rosa Parks status as an icon of our nation's struggles to live out its declaration that we are all created equal," Clyburn said.

Parks made history in Montgomery, Alabama, in December 1955 when she refused to move to the back of the bus and give her seat to a white passenger. She was jailed, charged and fined.  At the time, laws in the south required racial separation in buses, restaurants and public accommodations. Her action inspired a citywide bus boycott by blacks, and it spawned nationwide efforts to end segregation. In 1991, Parks told VOA she was motivated by a simple belief.

"I always believed in the golden rule: treat others as you wish to have them treat you. And I think that is a good rule to live by," Parks said.

Parks' minister, Dr. Martin Luther King, joined her cause and helped organize the bus boycott which lasted a year until the Supreme Court struck down segregtion.

"The long awaited mandate from the United States Supreme Court concerning bus segregation came to Montgomery. Segregation in public transportation is both legally and sociologically invalid," King said.

The Parks statue was authorized by an act of Congress in 2005 after she died.

Now, this recognition at the US Capitol ensures that her life and legacy will live on.

You May Like

Anti-Terror Drills Highlight China’s Push Into Central Asia

China, Russia, several central Asian countries wrap up massive anti terrorism military drills in Inner Mongolia More

Erdogan’s First Step: Secure More Power in New Role in Turkey

Erdogan was sworn in as Turkey's first popularly elected president on Thursday; he picked former foreign minister Ahmet Davutoglu as PM More

Pakistan Army Fails to Break Political Deadlock

PM Sharif claims he didn't ask army to defuse crisis; military rejects claim More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ukraine Battles Pro-Russia Rebel Assaulti
X
Daniel Schearf
August 29, 2014 9:30 PM
After NATO concluded an emergency meeting to discuss the crisis in eastern Ukraine, the country is struggling to contain heavy fighting near the strategic port of Mariupol, on the Azov Sea. Separatist rebels are trying to capture the city, allegedly with Russian military help, and Ukraine's defense forces are digging in. VOA's Daniel Schearf spoke with analysts about what lies ahead for Ukraine.
Video

Video Ukraine Battles Pro-Russia Rebel Assault

After NATO concluded an emergency meeting to discuss the crisis in eastern Ukraine, the country is struggling to contain heavy fighting near the strategic port of Mariupol, on the Azov Sea. Separatist rebels are trying to capture the city, allegedly with Russian military help, and Ukraine's defense forces are digging in. VOA's Daniel Schearf spoke with analysts about what lies ahead for Ukraine.
Video

Video Growing Business Offers Paint with a Twist of Wine

Two New Orleans area women started a small business seven years ago with one thing in mind: to help their neighbors relieve the stress of coping with a hurricane's aftermath. Today their business, which pairs painting and a little bit of wine, has become one of the fastest growing franchises across the U.S. VOA’s June Soh met the entrepreneurs at their newest franchise location in the Washington suburbs.
Video

Video Ebola Vaccine Trials To Begin Next Week

The National Institutes of Health says it is launching early stage trials of a vaccine to prevent the Ebola virus, which has infected or killed thousands of people across West Africa. The World Health Organization says Ebola could infect more than 20,000 people across the region by the time the outbreak is over. The epidemic has health experts and governments scrambling to prevent more people from becoming infected. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Asian Bacteria Threatens Florida Orange Trees

Florida's citrus fruit industry is facing a serious threat from a bacteria carried by the Asian insect called psyllid. The widespread infestation again highlights the danger of transferring non-native species to American soil. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Aging Will Reduce Economic Growth Worldwide in Coming Decades

The world is getting older, fast. And as more people retire each year, fewer working-age people will be there to replace them. Bond rating agency Moody’s says that will lead to a decline in household savings; reducing global investments - which in turn, will lead to slower economic growth around the world. But experts say it’s not too late to mitigate the economic impact of the world’s aging populations. Mil Arcega has more.
Video

Video Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?

U.S. President Barack Obama has ruled out sending ground troops to Iraq to fight militants of the so-called Islamic State, or ISIS, despite officials in Washington describing the extremist group as the biggest threat the United States has faced in years. Henry Ridgwell reports from London on the growing uncertainty over whether the West’s response to ISIS will be enough to defeat the terrorist threat.
Video

Video Coalition to Fight Islamic State Could Reward Assad

The United States along with European and Mideast allies are considering a broader assault against Islamic State fighters who have spread from Syria into Iraq and risk further destabilizing an already troubled region. But as VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports, confronting those militants could end up helping the embattled Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Video

Video Made in America Socks Get Toehold in Online Fashion Market

Three young entrepreneurs are hoping to revolutionize the high-end sock industry by introducing all-American creations of their own. And they’re doing most of it the old-fashioned way. VOA’s Julie Taboh recently caught up with them to learn what goes into making their one-of-a-kind socks.
Video

Video Americans, Ex-Pats Send Relief Supplies to West Africa

Health organizations from around the world are sending supplies and specialists to the West African countries that are dealing with the worst Ebola outbreak in history. On a smaller scale, ordinary Americans and African expatriates living in the United States are doing the same. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
Video

Video America's Most Popular Artworks Displayed in Public Places

Public places in cities across America were turned into open-air art galleries in August. Pictures of the nation’s most popular artworks were displayed on billboards, bus shelters, subway platforms and more. The idea behind “Art Everywhere,” a collaborative campaign by five major museums is to allow more people to enjoy art and learn about the country’s culture and history. Faiza Elmasry has more.
Video

Video Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implant

A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video India’s Leprosy Battle Stymied by Continuing Stigma

Medical advancements in the treatment of leprosy have greatly diminished its impact around the world, largely eliminating the disease from most countries. India made great strides in combating leprosy, but still accounts for a majority of the world’s new cases each year, and the number of newly infected Indians is rising - more than 130,000 recorded last year. Doctors there say the problem has more to do with society than science. Shaikh Azizur Rahman reports from Kolkata.

AppleAndroid