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tv   Rosa Parks Civil Rights Activism  CSPAN  December 29, 2019 6:29pm-7:40pm EST

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[captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit] university of washington history professor margaret o'mara discusses her book "the code: silicon valley and the remaking of america." you have whatace, eisenhower labeled the military-industrial complex. that becomes the foundation for this entrepreneurial flywheel of incredible creation and innovation and private wealth creation. and in fact, an industry that is considered an industry that built itself on its own, that become almostrnment has invisible to the people who are in silicon valley, who are the creators of these companies, these technologies. that is part of the magic, actually, that it is a government out of sight. >> tonight at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span's q&a.
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pioneers talks about rosa parks and her long history of civil rights activism. iny highlight her influence igniting boycotts and nonviolent protests. this event was held to celebrate the opening of the new exhibit >> please welcome the librarian of congress, doc your -- dr. carla hayden. >> good evening. good evening. and welcome to the library of congress. have our pleasure to everyone here for a very special night as we open the library's newest exhibition, "rosa parks: in her own words." it is my honor to welcome
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members of congress, including members of the congressional black caucus, members of the rosa parks family who have come to washington for this special celebration. can we give them a hand? [laughter] -- [applause] we would also like to welcome the rosa and raymond parks institute for self-development, led by miss elaine steel. that is another round of applause. [applause] carla: and photographer donna, whose photo of miss parks is prominently displayed in a vital part of the exhibition. of all the leaders and staff the different cultural institutions across washington including secretary of the smithsonian dr. lonnie bunch -- [applause] and the archivist of the
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united states, mr. david. library guests and staff, and our viewers online, this is being livestreamed right now, and i have to tell you, we are radiating with joy and pride tonight because it is our pleasure to open this beautiful and compelling new exhibition about one of our country's most icons, rosal rights parks. the collection resonates strongly with me. after i was sworn in as the 14th librarian of congress in 2016, the very first collection i was able to see was the rosa parks papers. and library manuscript specialist adrian cannon, who was a descendent of carter g woodson, father of black history, showed me the collection, and she carefully presented to me the different
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photographs and letters and private notes handwritten by misses rosa parks, and adrian is here tonight and is the proud curator of the exhibition. [applause] from the first moment i saw her family bible followed by all of her personal letters and writings, i felt the overwhelming power of the collection. letter she wrote after the arrest, i had been pushed around all my life and felt at this moment that i could not take it anymore. i knew then when i read those words that we had to share these papers with the public for much broader viewers, and in this wonderful exhibit, through her own words, the rosa parks you
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will discover was not always writing for publication or posterity. she was writing in a moment and for herself. this is not the rosa parks we all met in textbooks or public service announcements. complex, the very very human, and the very real rosa parks. her powerful story and her long fight for justice have always resonated with me, and as the first woman and the first african-american to serve as the librarian of congress, i take special pleasure in having the rosa parks collection housed here. [applause] here in thed world's largest library, side-by-side with the papers of frederick douglass, abraham lincoln, mary church terrel, and thurgood marshall.
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rosa parks lived a life dedicated to equal rights and social justice, and she helped change the country with examples she said. as a statue of rosa parks stands with pride in the capitol rotunda, in this exhibition, you will see her standing tall, quite literally, as her photos, images of her papers and video tower more than 12 feet above you. none of this would have been possible without the generosity of the howard g buffett foundation who made the rosa parks collection a gift to the nation. jesse started when holland, a journalist at the time, learned that the collection was stored away in boxes in a warehouse. he wrote a story about it and his story was read and seen by mr. howard buffett, who bought the papers and gave them to the library, so that they could be preserved, scanned, and seen by
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everyone. jesse is now a scholar to resident in the library of congress's john w center. that deserves a hand. [applause] a collection comprises 10,000 islands drawn from both miss parks private life and her decades of work for civil rights and includes photos and correspondence, handwritten reflections, private notes during the montgomery bus boycott, and the struggles she endured after. director, mr. david mandel, and his team, have curated a beautiful gallery that would tell miss parks story in her own words and photographs, then honor to open exhibition tomorrow to the general public on december 5, the 64th anniversary of the montgomery bus boycott. and as part of the opening, we are releasing this companion
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book, "rosa parks: in her own the libraryten by and including many of the photographs and documents you will see in the exhibition, and we are delighted to be joined by the people from the university of georgia press, who work with the library's publishing office to create this elegant companion piece. and we also are starting something new with this exhibition at the library of congress for the first time. we are launching an ask a librarian mobile research station within the exhibition and visitors will have the opportunity to write an exhibit, delve deeply with online research, resources related to this is parks life, through -- life through direction with the librarian. i have to acknowledge the generous donors who made this
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exhibition possible. theford foundation, katherine v reynolds foundation, with additional support -- [applause] support from aarp history, joyce and thomas, who are also here -- [applause] carla: and the capital group. we cannot thank you enough for your generosity and for your support at this exhibit. [applause] curator, adrian cannon, explained to me the storyteller of this exhibition is rosa parks. voiceher words and her that will be echoing through the gallery as you walk around the display. it is the full story of rosa parks.
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the lifelong activist and the woman behind the civil rights icon. [applause] ♪ [applause] >> and now, we are going to find out which of these ladies really is the incredible rosa parks. will the real reason parks -- rosa parks please stand up? [applause] >> rosa parks is often taught as a sort of meek seamstress who one day sort of accidentally stumbles into history and refuses to give up her seat on the bus, launching the modern civil rights movement, and that version, taught in schools and often celebrated nationally,
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very much distorts and limits who rosa parks actually was. her activism starts to decades in 1955 and will continue for four decades after. >> as far as i can remember, during my lifetime, i resisted the idea of being mistreated and pushed because of my race and i felt that all people should be free regardless of their color. ♪ was about 10,en i i met a little white way named franklin on the road. he was about my size, may be larger. he said something to me and he threatened to hit me. he rolled up his fists. i picked up a break and dared him to hit me. he thought better of the idea and went away. that, at 10, she knew
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the deep injustice of things. that gothe case through the most is the case about a 16-year-old by the name of jeremiah reese. he was a high school student, jazz drummer, and delivered groceries, and its rated having a relationship with a young white woman that got found out. she cried rape. >> she put him in the electric chair and told him if he did not confess, he would be electrocuted on the spot so he gave his confession. she began writing letters and trying to organize around blocking that execution, got dr. king involves, and it did not succeed, and he was executed, and she would tell me how devastating that was and how it wrote her heart. >> this is a rosa parks letter from 1956. "i cried bitterly that i would be lynched rather than run over
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by them. they could get the rope ready for me at anytime they wanted to do their lynching. while my neck was spared and my body was never riddled by bullets or derived by an auto, i felt that i was lynched many times in mind and spirit. she was a believer that you had to dissent, that you had to voice your objections, even if you could not see that that would do any good. >> rosa parks, like my mom, has her own definition of who she is, and she does not let anybody change that definition. a better worldr of tomorrow by giving all the love, care, and guidance to our children of today. >> as a child, when you read people, irtant thought that these were physical
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spoke apeople who language that was different from the language that i spoke, and i found that those were regular people, and so, i have always felt that, you know, a person does not have to be out of this world to accomplish something as extraordinary as that. have courage, determination, to go on with the task of becoming free, not only for ourselves, but for the nation and the world, cooperate with each other, have faith in god, and in ourselves. and i just think we underestimate the kind of courage it took to stand up to these forces that had silenced and marginalized black people from the very day we came to this continent, and yet she was taking them on. i think it was really an amazing part of her legacy was the courage, the strength, the bravery that defined her as a
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human being. >> i think when we are involved in excavating american history in coming to terms with our real history, i think too often, we find that most history is a sanitized madison avenue version of it, but she is a lifelong activist and she represents the combat of strategies to the persistent racism in the united states. i think it is important that we liberate rosa parks and ourselves from the tyranny of the superficial history. and danger, the dark closet of my mind, so much to remember. and yes, it is somewhere in the dark closet of my mind, to. it cannot help it be in the dark closet of your mind. you should never forget. there is so much to remember. but i also know that this exhibit will show that rosa parks made a difference in moving us forward.
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and move forward we must, even as we remember the past. we have to look to a brighter future. [applause] ♪ >> please welcome the honorable john lewis, representative from georgia. [applause]
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john: good evening. >> good evening. john: you are a beautiful group. you look good. [laughter] let me say to the librarian of congress, thank you. i may shed some tears. for opening this place , to have this exhibit in honor of a savior of our country. of our democracy. i don't know where i would be. i don't know where our nation would be. i don't know where we would be
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as a people. , shewoman, by sitting down encouraged so many others to stand up. assisting many of us, and never looked back, and we will continue to look forward. freddie gray would tell you, my attorney, you were that for many of us. unbelievablead number of clients. people just came. we need your help. rural alabama about 50 miles from montgomery. 48 to 50 miles from montgomery. my father had been a sharecropper.
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in 1944, when i was four years old, and i remember when i was four, my father had saved $300, and a man sold him 110 acres of land. we still owned that land today. [applause] people lived in fear. saying whitegns only, colored only, white boys, colored boys, white girls, colored girls. growing up, i was told by my mother, my father, my grandparents, and my great grandparents, don't get in trouble. inspired us to get in trouble. and i have been getting in trouble ever since.
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[applause] if you see something that is not right, not fair, not just, you have an obligation to do something. i met rosa parks. my staff had a statement. i cannot stay with it. i have been moved by the spirit. knowng up there, i don't what would have happened to so many people. too, getting in good trouble, necessary trouble.
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i followed your leadership. i followed the words. we have a subscription to the local newspaper, but my grandfather had one. when he was finished reading his newspaper, he would pass it on to us to read, so i read about you. rosa parks. myself, if theo people in montgomery can organize can stand up, we can stand up and organize. there was a little college eight or 10 hours from our home called troy state. so i got a chance to get an
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application and apply it to go to the school. i never heard a word from the school so i wrote a word to martin luther king jr. and told him i needed his help. because i have been inspired by rosa parks. dr. king wrote me back and sent me a bus ticket and invited me to come to montgomery to meet with him. i cannot forget it. gray is still the same way, so young. [laughter] greyhoundme at the bus station and drove me to the first baptist church and ushered .e in to the church i saw martin luther king jr. and abernathy standing behind the
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said are you king the boy from troy? are you john lewis? and i said, dr. king, i am john robert lewis. i gave him my whole name. he still called me the boy from troy. and over the years, i had an opportunity to meet rosa parks and to talk with her. she was so wonderful, so kind, and she kept saying to each one of us, you too can do something. participated us to wayhe sit ins, to study the of peace, the way of love, to study the philosophy and discipline. again, i want to thank you.
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i want to thank you for what you are doing to help educate , to be bold,ation to be courageous, and for people to see something. it is not right, not fair, not just. do something. we cannot afford to be quiet. time where we must -- our democracy. save our planet. we must do what rosa parks did. when there comes a time to sit in, sit down, do it. there comes a time to speak up. speak up and speak out. come a time to get in the way or to get in good trouble, necessary trouble, do it. be brave.
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be bold. be courageous. parks believed as i believed. we have a right to know what is in the food we eat. we have a right to know what is in the water we drink, what is .n the air we breathe mustach one of us today find ways to tell the story of rosa parks. one brave woman. the help of hundreds and thousands have changed america forever. to use the way of peace, the way of love. to follow the teachings of kingi and martin luther junior. to make our country better, and to help save our little planet. so thank you very much for being
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here tonight. and again, let me think the library of congress. thank you. [applause] carla: thank you, congressman lewis. are a living icon, and we owe so much to you. thank you for being here and thank you, thank you, thank you. and now, we have more special guests joining us for an
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extraordinary discussion on the life and legacy of rosa parks. by attorney fred gray, who made history by representing miss parks after her arrest in montgomery. and she offered her seat to miss parks on the day of the bus on december 1, 1955, and they will be joined by cbs news correspondent and the anchor of the saturday edition of cbs this morning, miss michelle miller, who will be moderating a discussion. please welcome attorney fred gray, jane dunker, and michelle miller.
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[applause] honored and privileged to be here. thank you.rian, thank you all for being here. thank you. , when your, mr. gray see this exhibit, when you see , it shatters the parks as ansa accidental activist. finally, that myth of an accidental activist will go by
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the way. the history, in her own words, .ill be spoken the woman the two of you knew will be known, and part of the reckoning, i find, with what we see upstairs is this funny, feisty, incredibly savvy american. you knew her long before 1954. i want you to describe the first moment you met her. ma'am. >> thank you, sir. >> before i answer that question, thank you to the library and for inviting me to share this occasion here.
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carol, here., some other relatives. if you just raise your hand. those who are here. and also the president of the national bar association. i just want to thank those persons who have come. i want to think congressman lewis. he wanted me to end up filing a lawsuit so he could go to weretate, but his parents afraid. he was a minor. we introduced him to dr. team and it -- dr. king and it introduced him to the movement and the rest of this history. now, what was your question? >> back to rosa parks. back to that day that you met her?how would you describe parks notd met rosa
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just december 1, 1955, but i really at first met her when i was a student at what was then alabama state college for knee grows. alabama state university. i lived on the west side of town . alabama state was on the east side of town. i was a student trying to learn how to be a teacher. i had already learned a little something about her to be a preacher, and that was the biggest thing that black boys in thegomery, alabama, in 1930's, 19 40's, and 1950's could be. i found out she worked with the naacp. ,he also worked with edie nixon a family friend of ours, who was mr. civil rights. they were very much interested in doing whatever it took so
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that african-americans would be able to enjoy the same rights and privileges of others. it was because of problems we had over buses, including a man who was killed as a result of an altercation on the bus, that i decided that in addition to being a preacher and being a teacher, i was going to be a lawyer. they tell me that lawyers help people. the blackght that people in montgomery had a real problem with buses. so i made a personal commitment when i was a teenager. i was going to finish college, go to somebody's law school, become a lawyer, but in order to do that at the university of alabama, go someplace else, come back, take the bar exam, and
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destroy everything segregated i could find. while i was thinking about doing doingi saw her working, what i wanted to do, and that was my first beginning. move forward to three or four years later. in 19, i enrolled in the law school in cleveland. i finished in three years, took the bar exam just in case. a month later, i took the alabama bar exam. on september 7, 1954, i became licensed to practice. now, i am ready to destroy everything segregated i could find. [laughter] -- [applause] fred: in one of the things that misses parks was doing, she was
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youth director, and one of the young ladies who was in her youth director course at the claudette. she was a 15-year-old girl who did what rosa parks did but did it nine months before without the instructions and without all of the experiences you learned about that misses parks had already gone through. , she came inrks and helped me to get it open. at a department store a block and a half from our office and we talked about these matters. arrested, that was my first civil rights case. she was interested. edie nixon was interested and fred gray was interested.
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black community was not quite ready for the lawsuit i was ready to file. rosae decided, including parks, that we were going to get ready, and whenever the next opportunity presented itself, we would be ready to end up ending the problems on the buses. that opportunity came on december 1, 1955, after misses parks and i had had conferences almost daily for five days a week, telling people, if you decide not to give up your seat on the bus, how could you conduct yourself? we talked about that. we even talked about it on december 1, 1955. and she knew i was going out of town. when i got back, i found she had been arrested. >> hold that thought.
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hold that thought just for a second. i want to stop right there. so you set the stage. here she was. for a year, you said, she had been instructed by you on how to act if she had been arrested. if she decided if she was going to take a stand. old.s gunther, 18 years you did not even live in montgomery, alabama. you lived outside of montgomery. so you did not live on the base. >> we lived on the base. >> how did you come to be on that bus? >> well, after we moved to montgomery, i went to the doctor at the base and i found out i was going to have a baby, and the doctor required that i do a lot of walking.
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every day, i would walk to the city and walked back. i had a coin with me in case i needed to ride the bus, but i actually did a lot of walking. that day, i guess i was tired. i had no idea. maybe i was ready to go home. i satgot on the bus and on a long seat behind the driver, and all of a sudden, the driver stood up, turned around, and just bellowed something out to somebody down the aisle. i realized it was an older woman. she was in her 40's so that was older. so when he let me have that seat, i stood up and said she can have my seat. skinned,d that, fair tall man pushed his knees into
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mine and said "don't you dare move." mr. gray knows that in the 1950's, women did as men said. totally different from today. [laughter] >> men were in charge of the world. anyway, that is what happened. and all of a sudden, i sat back .own, and i got off the bus >> did you see her arrest? jane: no, i did not. carla: so here you are. yes. her daughter is in the audience. exactly 64 years. i am sorry. but i think back because no one
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storyorward to tell the until you. no other person has admitted being there. why did it take so long for your story to come out? jane: because when i got back to the base, i never went back to the city, and i did not even know anything that was going on in the city. i had no idea there was a bus boycott or this man called martin luther king. i had never heard his name, so and 35 home to atlanta or more years went by of my life. growing a family. and then all of a sudden, one sunday afternoon after church, one of my sons was reading on the floor a life magazine, and saw a bus and he said, mom, this is the funniest looking bus, and . said oh dear
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i was on that bus. so immediately, one of us started calling to meet misses ,arks, and after the third call elaine steele called back, the atounder of the institute the event, and she would invite you to her hotel. so we went over. they asked me to give my recollection of that day. michelle: and you gave it. she did not remember you. but she remembered what happened on the bus. jane: as she remembered a tall man. was one of the
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interviewers, she said i am here to protect miss parks. parksittle while, misses says you were there. michelle: she said you were there. jane: right. michelle: for those millennials out there who have a hard time speaking about a world where a tweet and a social media blast and news 24 hours, seven days a week, it was a different time in terms of news coverage. describe it.ou to rosa parks and what she did on december 1, no one outside of montgomery really knew about it. did they? parks orw about rosa knew about montgomery?
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knowlle: they did not about rosa parks because the not did not penetrate, was put out there in the same manner. fred: with respect to misses parks and the rest? fred: yes. it was not national -- michelle: yes. it was not national news? fred: it was national news, the montgomery bus boycott. it made the news. arrests did not make the news until mr. nixon leaked the story to the press that we were going to start a boycott on monday. and the reporter for the montgomery advertiser ended up running a story and really, mr. nixon did not tell us. we were trying to keep the white people from knowing it but let
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the black people know it, but it developed that the best thing that happened was for mr. nixon to do what he did. as a result, it makes the front page on sunday and monday that gros were going to boycott the buses. in montgomery, alabama. her, aftertalked to i got back in town on december 1, and she retained me to represent her, i asked her to tell me about anybody who did anything on that bus that would help her in her case. me, any person, white nor black, had offered to help her to do anything. they were there, the officer who had police power asked her to get up. she politely told him she was not going to get up.
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she was not disorderly. and they would have helped her if we had had some witness on the bus to come to misses parks rescue. me and i never subpoenaed anyone to testify on her behalf because we did not know at the time. we knew white people were on the buses. i am not saying she was not there at all. i am sure there were at least more than 10 white people because they had it. there were black people on the bus, but nobody thought enough of miss parks to come to misses parks rescue, so she was arrested, and the rest is history. us what wasll ofinitively the signature what made misses parks, not just her arrest, but her trial
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resonate. it was a tandem act. was it not? fred: no, no. misses parks had been working on civil rights for years before december 1. fred: i understand that -- michelle: i understand that but you made very clear to me that people have been working on the idea of a boycott for some time. decision to boycott the night of her trial on december 5 , that was the impetus, that was the explosion, was it not? fred: the matter of staying off of the buses as a result of misses parks arrest did not originate with misses rosa parks . she was not the person who was really moving forward with it. as a matter of fact, when i met with her in her living room and
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talked with her, what we were concerned about than was preparing -- there were two things in my mind that i told her that we would be thinking about. the first thing, we have got to get ready for her trial on december 1, so don't worry about it. i am going to get that ready. i said, ultimately, we are going to have to file a lawsuit. i said she has been talking about asking people to stay off of the buses because we have been having this problem for a long time. i said don't you worry about that, mrs. parks. you have done your part. talk to nixon and we are going to see if an addition to people's -- two year trial taking place, we will have a protest and people will stay off of the buses. toeft our house and went
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nixon's house and talked with him. he was willing to participate. i told him i was going to the house and talked with her. we talked in her living room from the evening of december 1 2 and morning of december we sat and planned the various things that had to take place if we were going to get the people to stay off the bus. one, we got to get the ministers because they had more people on sunday morning than anyone else to get the message out. we were asking them to stay off of the bus for only one day. but we wanted them to stay off of the bus until they could come back on a nonsegregated basis but we could not tell them that so we talked about the one day, but we had to be prepared that if we were successful, what are we going to do next? then we said we need somebody to
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serve as a spokesman. it was joanne robinson who suggested my pastor should serve as spokesman. michelle: and who was that pastor? fred: that was reverend martin luther king jr., who had just gotten to town about one year before. normally, nixon, mr. silva politicald another and business men in the senate, would have been the person to serve in that capacity, but what we were afraid of, joanne and i, if we used either nixon or louis, we may lose some of the other ones, so let's get somebody else, she said. i will tell you who. i said who? she said my pastor, martin luther king jr. i said i met dr. king. i do not know him like you do. but i said let me give you two good positions for these other
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two men. treasurer, because he knows a philip randolph, who is union, and of the the other man was a former coach at alabama state. he was in the political aspect. he wanted to get people registered to vote. in order to get to the club, you had to be a registered voter. i said let's make nixon the treasurer, lewis the chairman of the transportation committee, because if it is on monday, we will need somebody. jewel is i said co-owner of the largest home in
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town. guess what? they have automobiles. going to don i am when we get through here, fred, i am going to go to alabama state and get some students. i am going to draw up a leaflet. woman say another black has been arrested. the trial will be on monday. let's stay off of the buses as a protest. that is what happened and the rest is history. neither one of us -- i could not afford -- it could not be afforded that fred was out here doing all of that. i would have gotten disbarred before i got barred. [laughter] was -- mitterrand.
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it was a lot of plans that went in to the bus boycott, what it them waswhat inspired a 15-year-old girl, claudette carbon, who did what mrs. parks did nine months before, and we all said, if claudette could do that, then all of us can do whatever it takes, and we stayed off of the buses for 282 days. [applause] fred: now you know the rest of the story. in fact, rosa parks was convicted. and parks was convicted claudette's case was the case that won against segregation. claudette's -- let me take
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them in chronological order. we will take rosa parks case. she was the one arrested on december 1. so my first responsibility was to see that she was adequately represented on december 5. i knew that they were going to convict her. there was no way in the world they could end up finding her not guilty it i knew that. i let them put their case on come across examine the witness, raise constitutional questions, don't put on any evidence, because none of them could say that she had done that, and see what happens. and what did they do? they convicted her. , we appealed it to the circuit court and then it had to go all the way up to the alabama courts, and then ultimately to the u.s. supreme court.
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so that was one case. gotten her found not guilty, all that would have happened is she would have been not guilty, and the city ordinance and state statutes requiring segregation would have still been on the books, so we had to have another lawsuit. and that was a case of browder versus gail. now, i get an opportunity to let our people know, at this point in time, and this was a couple of days after dr. king's house had been burned, we need to go ahead and file this case, and the question is, i knew in my own mind i was not going to use rosa parks as a plaintiff in that case. and i was not going to do it because if i had done that, her case was up on appeal, and what the city would have said is that this is a collateral attack for her appeal case. so let's let her case go through
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the system. let's get some other good plaintiffs, and i can think of no better plaintiff than claudette, this young girl. but she was a minor, so her parents had to be involved, and the result was that we ended up andcting other persons, that was the case of browder versus gail that ultimately desegregated the buses. but mrs. parks -- if claudette had not done what she did on march 2, 1955, it is quite possible that mrs. parks may not have done what she did on december 1. she had not been arrested, there would have been no trial. there would have been no meeting at the baptist church. martin luther king jr. would not have been introduced to the nation at that time. and the whole history of the civil rights movement would have been different but for the
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15-year-old girl, claudette. while we honor mrs. parks here tonight, if mrs. parks was here, i am sure she would be glad to say that part of her inspiration, along with what she had been doing for years before, was to be able to inspire young girls like claudette to do what she did. so we also honor the plaintiffs in that case as they did in montgomery on this past sunday. they also unveiled a statue of rosa parks and honored the persons in browder versus gail. [applause] ifhelle: it almost sounds as , because this young woman was in rosa parks youth ministry. she inspired a
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young woman who then inspired forward overay it and over and over again. here you are, 64 years later, practicing attorney. congratulations. fred: thank you. [applause] knowlle: i just want to , rosa parks'sy legacy, impacts what is happening in today's strong, as resin parks has always said. the struggle continues. and so, i wonder how this legacy informsur that. well, i don't know about my legacy. historians will have to decide that.
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i know this. least twot at generations of people have been aboutho know nothing hard-core segregation. they don't know about the problems that we had, and i ,hink, if i will have a legacy i think if mrs. parks was here tonight, she would be happy with all that we are doing. ushink she would also want to say thank you and all of that . but to look at where we are now and see the progress we have importantly,n more just to see what needs to be done to solve the problem so that all of the people in this country will enjoy all of the rights and privileges that the majority enjoys.
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and that has not ended yet. so the struggle continues. i believe that there are two major problems still facing us that we need to be serious about. one, this country still has some serious racial problems. racism has not been eliminated in this country. this country has never really faced up to taking affirmative actions towards destroying racism. we have chipped at it a little bit but we have never really worked on it, so that is one problem that needs to be, and if i have a legacy or if mrs. parks hats of -- has a legacy, i think she would want us to complete the task of doing away with racism so that everybody, regardless of their race, color, creed, sexual orientation, will be able to enjoy the same rights
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and privileges. [applause] fred: i think there is a second point, and that is, in this country, there is too much inequality between the majority -- when i think about majority, i think about white people -- and the minority. and i think about african-americans and others. the disparity between those two are so great, and if you just -- if you will -- and this is nothing new. the national urban league has a report they make every year to the president, and what i am telling you about this part of it, you can find it in the annual report. the state of black america. fred: the five areas by
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african-americans. at the lower part, and whites are at the top. if you take, for example, in thanloyment, we are less white-- less than where people are. if you take poverty, we are shape than in worse whites are. if you take incarceration, we are incarcerated 16 times as whites, so what i am saying to you is that inequality needs to end. those two things, inequality and racism, nothing new. they have been here since slavery times. but they are not going to go away unless somebody does something. if mrs.d done nothing, parks had done nothing, if claudette had done nothing, it would not happen. if you can take what we did in
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the civil rights movement, the bus boycotts and everything else, number one, you have to recognize that we still have a problem. because if you don't think we have a [applause] secondly, you have to prepare and make plans. you cannot try to execute at all , and then when you do that, you have to execute these plans. done two things need to be and it needs to start at the top. it should start at the white house and then go to congress, the supreme court, the ceos and educational institutions to do away with racism and inequality. [applause] michelle: and chris rock, the
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comedian, said racism is not a black person problem. it is a white person problem. i look at this beautiful white woman who says she was so inspired by rosa parks. you met with her. you say she changed her life. how did she? >> i do not think about that in the beginning, i was busy growing a family and living life, until the magazine incident. then we met with misses parks ,nd before the meeting was over she said i was there. done by interview was
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brenda davenport and elaine seale. they asked me if i would tell my recollection of the day and when i told the recollection of what .appened that day michelle: you are a missionary and a pastor and work in the movement until this day. >> to this day. i go to schools to talk to children about rosa parks on the february,t and every all of my days are filled and i love it. i enjoy it. especially seeing children learn what really happened. michelle: do you see the
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struggle through the eyes of mrs. parks? do you see it as your struggle now? >> i do not see it as a struggle for me at all. absolutely no conflict with red, yellow, black, white. . work with all kinds of people we are just people. sermon would be about peace, love, kindness, and forgiveness. michelle: forgiveness. thank you both. [applause] thank you, freddie gray. -- fred gray. earlierreferred to this .
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thank you for having this exhibit for rosa parks. people can come from all over the country and see what is here. you have museums all over the ,ountry who need our support and they are deserving of that support. so that the story can be told and they will be educated on it. are organizations in the test giga history center. it gives a history of all of the people under one roof. and gives a brief history of the civil rights movement from slavery times
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five the present, showing cases of people from alabama. we ask for your support. if you want to learn more, just let me know. that is the first thing. [applause] the next thing, all of what i have told you tonight about the movement and more is found in my autobiography. there is a copy over there. our problem is that our young people do not know what has happened. if we do not educate them fully, it will never get done. thank you very much. [applause] michelle: thank you. [applause] michelle: you have seen history
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in the making. that is what we had hoped you -- would see. >> people who would love history and appreciate he -- appreciate history. we will have brochures for everyone. thank you so much. the report from the national urban league is also available. you should know that this exhibit is going to be online so people everywhere can see everything. we thank all of you for being here and being part of this discussion. and now we invite you to go upstairs and see the exhibit. [applause]
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>> this is american history tv feature 48 where we hours of programs on c-span3 about our nation's past. >> american history tv products are available at our new online store. go to c-span to see what is new and check out all of the c-span products.
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presidency,e uriversity of texas jeremy s talks about impeachment, including the current proceedings against president trump. >> congress has always played a vital role in the investigation and adjudication of alleged presidential misconduct. they have investigated many presidents for misconduct, following the lead of various informants, including journalists and whistleblowers. the story of whistleblowers goes back before the founding of the republic back to the 18th century after the continental congress. has punishedess many presidents with a variety of instruments. they investigate and punish presidents for misuse of power. these include funding cuts,
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restrictive legislation, sensor -- censure, and impeachment. we have to look at this as a spectrum by which congress investigates and oversees and acts upon presidential misconduct. that is what congress has always done historically. hold presidents accountable for the misuse of power. today as historians we have to say congress is fulfilling their role in our democracy. let me put some flesh on the bones of this historical thesis. go through a few points about this. misconductidential is common in american history. it is not new. as the founders expected and as
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we all know, power corrupts. best presidents have succumbs to the temptations of power in different ways. >> learn more about congressional oversight on sunday on the presidency. cathy: national history day is a program that culminates in student competition. students are encouraged to pick a topic in history. that can be anything. it can be world history, local, national, state, ancient, modern, everything in between, as long as they are interested in it.


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