Here we’ve compiled a list of the best and famous quotes by Rosa Parks about change, courage, civil disobedience, and human rights.
Rosa Louise McCauley Parks was the first female African-American activist in the civil rights movement. The United States Congress gave her the titles of “the first lady of civil rights” and “the mother of the freedom movement.”
Dominantly, Parks played a vital role in the Montgomery bus boycott, and there is a fascinating story behind it. On December 1, 1955, she was traveling through Montgomery, Alabama, where when the bus driver ordered her to be vacant the colored section seat for a white (because the white section was totally filled), she refused to give her seat.
The police arrested her for the violation of segregation rights. Her act inspired the black people to boycott the Montgomery bus due to their unjust segregation laws.
So, let’s move to the list of 70 best by Rosa Parks that will definitely inspire you.
Rosa Parks Quotes About Change
- “An opportunity was being given to me to do what I had asked of others.” — Rosa Parks
- “One person can change the world.” — Rosa Parks
- “I see the energy of young people as a real force for positive change.” — Rosa Parks
- “When people made up their minds that they wanted to be free and took action, then there was a change.” — Rosa Parks
- “It takes more than one person to bring about peace – it takes all of us.” — Rosa Parks
- “Stand for something, or you will fall for anything. Today’s mighty oak is yesterday’s nut that held its ground.” — Rosa Parks
- “I believe we are here on the planet Earth to live, grow up and do what we can to make this world a better place for all people to enjoy freedom.” — Rosa Parks
- “As long as there is unemployment, war, crime and all things that go to the infliction of man’s inhumanity to man, regardless – there is much to be done, and people need to work together.” — Rosa Parks
- “As long as people use tactics to oppress or restrict other people from being free, there is work to be done.” — Rosa Parks
- “I’d see the bus pass every day. But to me, that was a way of life; we had no choice but to accept what was the custom. The bus was among the first ways I realized there was a Black world and a white world.” — Rosa Parks
Rosa Parks Quotes About Courage
- “Without a vision, the people perish, but without courage, dreams die.” — Rosa Parks
- “I have learned over the years that when one’s mind is made up, this diminishes fear; knowing what must be done does away with fear.” — Rosa Parks
- “The only tired I was, was tired of giving in.” — Rosa Parks
- “To bring about change, you must not be afraid to take the first step. We will fail when we fail to try.” — Rosa Parks
- “I had no idea that history was being made. I was just tired of giving up.” — Rosa Parks
- “Knowing what must be done does away with fear.” — Rosa Parks
- “Each person must live their life as a model for others.” — Rosa Parks
- “Memories of our lives, of our works and our deeds, will continue in others.” — Rosa Parks
- “Since I have always been a strong believer in God, I knew that He was with me, and only He could get me through that next step.” — Rosa Parks
- “If I can sit down for freedom, you can stand up for children.” — Rosa Parks
- “If I stayed angry at other people, I would miss finding friends among those I was angry with.” — Rosa Parks
- “Have you ever been hurt and the place tries to heal a bit, and you just pull the scar off of it over and over again.” — Rosa Parks
- “We must 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 ourselves.” — Rosa Parks
- “As a child, I learned from the Bible to trust in God and not be afraid. And I felt the Lord would give me the strength to endure whatever I had to face. God did away with all my fear.” — Rosa Parks
Rosa Parks Quotes on Civil Disobedience
- “I’m tired of being treated like a second-class citizen.” — Rosa Parks
- “I will always work for human rights for all people.” — Rosa Parks
- “There were times when it would have been easy to fall apart or to go in the opposite direction, but somehow I felt that if I took on more step, someone would come along to join me.” — Rosa Parks
- “It was not pre-arranged. It just happened that the driver made a demand, and I just didn’t feel like obeying his demand. I was quite tired after spending a full day working.” — Rosa Parks
- “I had given up my seat before, but this day, I was especially tired. Tired from my work as a seamstress, and tired from the ache in my heart.” — Rosa Parks
- “I had felt for a long time, that if I was ever told to get up so a white person could sit, that I would refuse to do so.” — Rosa Parks
- “I had been pushed as far as I could stand.” — Rosa Parks
- “At the time I was arrested, I had no idea it would turn into this. It was just a day like any other day. The only thing that made it significant was that the masses of the people joined in.” — Rosa Parks
- “I did not get on the bus to get arrested; I got on the bus to go home.” — Rosa Parks
- “I had decided that I would not go anywhere with a piece of paper in my hand asking white folks for any favors. I had made that decision myself, as an individual.” — Rosa Parks
- “There is work to do; that is why I cannot stop or sit still. As long as a child needs help, as long as people are not free, there will be work to do. As long as an elderly person is attacked or in need of support, there is work to do. As long as we have bigotry and crime, we have work to do.” — Rosa Parks
- “I knew someone had to take the first step, and I made up my mind not to move.” — Rosa Parks
- “I do the very best I can to look upon life with optimism and hope and looking forward to a better day.” — Rosa Parks
- “When that white driver stepped back toward us, when he waved his hand and ordered us up and out of our seats, I felt a determination cover my body like a quilt on a winter night.” — Rosa Parks
- “Arrest me for sitting on a bus? You may do that.” — Rosa Parks
- “Why do you all push us around?” — Rosa Parks
- “At the time I didn’t realize why there was so much Klan activity, but later I learned that it was because African-American soldiers were returning from World War acting as if they deserved equal rights because they had served their country.” — Rosa Parks
- “People always say that I didn’t give up my seat because I was tired, but that isn’t true. No, the only tired I was, was tired of giving in.” — Rosa Parks
- “I will no longer act on the outside in a way that contradicts the truth that I hold deeply inside. I will no longer act as if I were less than the whole person, I know myself inwardly to be.” — Rosa Parks
- “I thought about Emmett Till, and I could not go back. My legs and feet were not hurting; that is a stereotype. I paid the same fare as others, and I felt violated. I was not going back.” — Rosa Parks
- “That was a difference between black slaves and white indentured servants. Black slaves were usually not allowed to keep their names but were given new names by their owners.” — Rosa Parks
- “One of my greatest pleasures there was enjoying the smell of bacon frying and coffee brewing and knowing that white folks were doing the preparing instead of me. I was 42 years old, and it was one of the few times in my life up to that point when I did not feel any hostility from white people.” — Rosa Parks
- “Victory or defeat? It is the slogan of all-powerful militarism in every belligerent nation. And yet, what can victory bring to the proletariat?” — Rosa Parks
- “My only concern was to get home after a hard day’s work.” — Rosa Parks
- “All I was trying to do was get home from work.” — Rosa Parks
- “I was ready to die but give my consent never. Never, never.” — Rosa Parks
- “I would like to be remembered as a person who wanted to be free… so other people would be also free.” — Rosa Parks
- “There were times when it would have been easy to fall apart or to go in the opposite direction, but somehow I felt that if I took one more step, someone would come along to join me.” — Rosa Parks
Rosa Parks Quotes About Human Rights
- “I believe there is only one race – the human race.” — Rosa Parks
- “During the Montgomery bus boycott, we came together and remained unified for 381 days. It has never been done again. The Montgomery boycott became the model for human rights throughout the world.” — Rosa Parks
- “I want to be treated like a human being.” — Rosa Parks
- “It is better to protest than to accept injustice.” — Rosa Parks
- “Racism is still with us. But it is up to us to prepare our children for what they have to meet, and, hopefully, we shall overcome.” — Rosa Parks
- “I thought of Emmett Till, and when the bus driver ordered me to move to the back, I just couldn’t move.” — Rosa Parks
- “I would like to be known as a person who is concerned about freedom and equality and justice and prosperity for all people.” — Rosa Parks
- “Nothing in the Golden Rule says that others will treat us as we have treated them. It only says that we must treat others in a way that we would want to be treated.” — Rosa Parks
- “If you want to be respected for your actions, then your behavior must be above reproach. If our lives demonstrate that we are peaceful, humble, and trusted, this is recognized by others.” — Rosa Parks
- “We didn’t have any civil rights. It was just a matter of survival, of existing from one day to the next. I remember going to sleep as a girl hearing the Klan ride at night and hearing a lynching and being afraid the house would burn down.” — Rosa Parks
- “Life is to be lived to its fullest so that death is just another chapter. Memories of our lives, of our works and our deeds, will continue in others.” — Rosa Parks
- “What really matters is not whether we have problems, but how we go through them. We must keep going on to make it through whatever we are facing.”
- “People need to free their minds of racial prejudice and believe in equality for all and freedom regardless of race. It would be a good thing if all people were treated equally and justly and not be discriminated against because of race or religion or anything that makes them different from others.” — Rosa Parks
- “Our mistreatment was just not right, and I was tired of it.” — Rosa Parks
- “Whatever my individual desires were to be free, I was not alone. There were many others who felt the same way.” — Rosa Parks
- “I was determined to achieve the total freedom that our history lessons…” — Rosa Parks
- “Our freedom is threatened every time one of our young people is killed by another child… every time a person gets stopped and beaten by the police because of the color of their skin.” — Rosa Parks
- “It is better to teach or live equality and love … than to have hatred and prejudice.” — Rosa Parks
What did Rosa Parks say on the bus?
The conversation between Parks and deliver showed her exhaustion from the racial behavior the blacks were facing. Additionally, she was drained from work and just wanted to sit peacefully to soothe her nerves on that day.
Driver: “Are you going to stand up?”
Rosa: “No.” And kept quiet.
Driver: “Well, I’m going to have you arrested.”
Rosa (replied softly): “You may do that.”
What are the three interesting facts about Rosa Parks?
Below, we’ve mentioned the three amazing facts about Rosa Park’s life.
- There were racial barriers for blacks, and the ratio of higher education of African-Americans was less than 7%. However, Parks was a graduated and passionate lady like many others.
- In December 1943, she became an active member of the Civil Rights Movement. Parks got the position of secretary and developed “The Committee for Equal Justice for Mrs. Recy Taylor.
- She published her autobiography “Rosa Parks: My Story” in 1992.
What did Rosa Parks say when they asked to move?
When the driver demands her to move to vacant the seat for a white passenger, Park simply replied, “No” in a soft manner. She didn’t make any argument and kept silent until the driver showed his next action.