December 1st, 2022
I don't think Rosa Parks thought that she will change the flow of history through her act of formal civil disobedience, 67 years ago to the day. I think she just did what was the right thing to do. It required courage and resolve to actually go through with it, instead of accepting the wrong and common and easy solution — of just giving up. In her case, giving up her seat to another person as was required by law based only on the skin color of both parties. She just said no, and didn't give up her seat and her pride, and her humanity, and was arrested for it.
I don't think she (or anybody else) could have any idea about the outcome of her bravery. I don't think she expected to become a hero and an icon of the Civil Rights Movement. Actually, I don't think — I know it. She had shown, through her life of quiet and deep dignity, that she wasn't looking for any personal gain or fame. She was a person who did what was the right and correct thing to do with no regard for her personal discomfort and harassment that she knew was upcoming. Her dignity as a person, and especially as an African-American person in the deep south of the United States in the 1950s, was of the utmost value.
I don't think anyone of us can predict the full outcome of our actions. There are situations when we know if we do that, then this will follow. And many a time this just happens. But there are times when we are faced with a choice where it might be difficult to predict the result. Sometimes, that can happen with something we can see as insignificant at the time, but it can be a changing point in our life. We simply might not know or even notice it. That is why it is good to have a well-ingrained set of values — moral and ethical — that can guide us to make the right choice, even when that choice might seem insignificant in a wider view of things. I wish I could say I am ready to make choices and be honest with myself about making them. Many times, I still take the easy way out. Good to have other people, not as heroes, but as real-life examples that it is so important to stay true to personal values and morals.