City celebrates 2nd annual Rosa Parks Day with bus memorials

Rep. Harold Love with seat reserved on the city bus in honor of Rosa Parks Day.

Nashville marked Tennessee’s second annual Rosa Parks Day on Tuesday with memorials commemorating the anniversary of Parks’ refusal to comply with a segregated seating on city buses.

“We honor her bravery in refusing to be treated as a second-class citizen and leadership as she inspired others in the #CivilRightsMovement,” tweeted Rep. Harold Love, who rode a WeGo bus to honor Rosa Parks Day.

On Dec. 1, 1955, Parks sat in a bus seat reserved for White people and refused to move. She was arrested for this act of civil disobedience, but the moment helped fuel growing calls for racial equality and the Civil Rights Movement.

On Tuesday, city buses operated by WeGo Public Transit in Nashville carried placards in a seat reserved to recognize Parks’ protest, an anniversary that is now recognized under state law.

Rosa Parks Day officially became a state holiday in 2019 after legislation sponsored by Sen. Raumesh Akbari and Rep. Karen Camper was signed into law.

“Even as our nation is celebrating the historic election of its first female and Black vice president, it’s important that we remember the sacrifices and accomplishments of the pioneers who made it possible,” Sen. Akbari said. “Just as she inspires us today, we hope Rosa Parks’ legacy continues to motivate new generations of leaders to fight inequality.”

“Rosa Parks showed us that every person has the power within themselves to make a difference in this world-if we can only summon the courage,” Rep. Camper said. “Of the many leaders who contributed to the modern Civil Rights Movement, Rosa Parks stands out as an ordinary person who found extraordinary strength to fight a common injustice. We need more of that courage today and we hope Rosa Parks Day serves as a reminder of how one person’s actions can change the very course of history.”