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Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Oct. 28, 2005 / 25 Tishrei, 5766

Rosa Parks showed us the power of one

By Leonard Pitts, Jr.


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | "Non-cooperation with evil is as much a moral obligation as cooperation with good" — Martin Luther King Jr.

Her feet were not tired. At least, no more so than usual.

She always hated that legend so let us, in this, the week of her death at age 92, set the record straight. And while we're at it, let's correct another misconception: It's not precisely true that she refused to give up her seat to a white man. The seats next to her and across the aisle were empty, vacated by black people who had already heeded the bus driver's command to get up. So there were places for the white man to sit.

But under the segregation statutes of Montgomery, Ala., no white man was expected to suffer the indignity of sitting next to a black woman or even across from her. So driver J.F. Blake asked again. And Rosa Parks, this soft-spoken 42-year-old department store seamstress just trying to get home from work, gave him her answer again. She told him no.

Her feet were not tired. Her soul was exhausted.

On Dec. 1, it will be 50 years since that drama played out in Court Square in the capital of the Old Confederacy. Fifty years since police took her away. Fifty years since black Montgomery protested by boycotting the buses. Fifty years since community leaders tapped as their leader the boyish-looking new preacher at the Dexter Avenue Baptist Church, Martin Luther King Jr.

That moment in Court Square was the birthplace of the 13-year epoch called the Civil Rights Movement. You could make a compelling argument that it was also a birthplace of the modern world.

None of which Rosa Parks could have foreseen that December evening half a century ago. All she knew was that she was tired, sick of acquiescing, accommodating, accepting foolish white laws and white people who said she wasn't good enough to occupy a bus seat. Something had gotten into her that wouldn't let her go along any more, something that turned a lifetime of yes into an electric moment of no.

In the world born from that moment, it is not uncommon for white men to sit next to black women. Or to work for them; be married to them; even get arrested by them. Indeed, any list of the most powerful women in America is likely to have two black women — Oprah Winfrey, Condoleezza Rice — at the top.

Racism that was once brazen enough to demand a black woman's bus seat is covert now, a throw-the-rock-and-hide-your-hand charade, its effects as visible as ever, its workings mostly hidden. But for all that, it is now only the second most worrisome threat to African-American life.

African-Americans are the first. Because many of us have internalized the lies of inferiority so deeply as to make racism superfluous. We don't need white people to destroy us; we happily destroy ourselves. Destroy our families by exiling fathers from them, destroy our futures by declaring education something only white people do, destroy our spirits with a culture that celebrates all that is seamy, soulless and material.

This is the threat that troubles most, simply because while racism strangles aspiration, nihilism renders it stillborn.

And in the face of this threat, too many of us do what Rosa Parks got sick of doing: acquiesce, accommodate, accept.

Indeed, let a white man call our children fatherless, ill-educated thugs and we will, justifiably, rip him an orifice G-d never intended. Let our children say the same thing of themselves and many of us call it music and look the other way.

The lesson of Rosa Parks' life is that you don't have to look the other way. That night on the bus, she wasn't a movement, wasn't an icon. She was just a woman; one woman who'd had enough, who refused to comply any longer with a system that dehumanized her.

Her death reminds us that there is no number more powerful than one, no word more potent than no.

And no force more compelling than a soul grown exhausted enough for change.

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© 2005, The Miami Herald Distributed by TMS

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