The legacy of civil rights pioneer Rosa Parks will reverberate for generations to come, and legislators have set out on a mission to ensure that her resiliency and resistance is celebrated through the establishment of a national holiday. According to Atlanta Daily World, legislation has been introduced for the creation of National Rosa Parks Day.
Congresswoman Joyce Beatty is leading the charge to have December 1 observed as a commemorative holiday. It marks the day Parks refused to give up her seat for a white man on a Montgomery city bus, sparking the Montgomery Bus Boycott in 1955. Rosa Parks Day is currently observed in five states throughout the country. In Missouri and California it’s celebrated on her birthday, February 4, and in Oregon, Alabama and Ohio it’s observed on December 1.
Rep. Beatty, who was instrumental in the push to have Rosa Parks Day observed in Ohio 16 years ago, says Parks’ legacy deserves to be celebrated nationally as her bravery ignited a movement that will forever be interwoven in the fabric of justice in America. “Through her willingness to sit, Rosa Parks stood up for what she believed in,” she said in a statement. “As a state legislator, I was proud to lead the push to make the Buckeye State the first state to officially recognize Rosa Parks Day. It’s now time for us to come together as a nation to honor this American hero through a new national holiday.” Other politicians who have displayed support for the legislation include Alabama Representative Terri Sewell and Tennessee Representative Jim Cooper. The proposed legislation will have to go through the House and Senate before it reaches President Joe Biden and is signed into law.
News about the legislation comes as there is controversy swirling around a banned children’s book about Parks in York, Pennsylvania.