In 1955, Rosa Parks …
In 1955, Rosa Parks decided that she preferred to sit right where she was sitting. That one simple act became the spark that exposed the shame that was personal and institutional racism in our country, and started us on the path to setting that straight.

Rosa Parks died last night at the age of 92. Her contribution to the American conscience should not be forgotten. She was rewarded by being able to see the results of the stand she took by sitting.

We have come a very long way since that day in 1955. Racism is not dead, to be sure, but it has become marginalized. We will never be completely free of hate or fear, and as such we will never be completely free of racism; it’s part of the sinful nature of mankind. Only God can remove that from individuals. What helps, though, is being able to call it what it is when it rears its head.

What doesn’t help is when the term “racism” is used to label things that have nothing to do with it. This cheapens the term and removes from it any relevant meaning and force. It also reverses the proper marginalization of those who are true racists. “If they call that ‘racist’, then what I think isn’t all that bad.”

We can honor Rosa Parks by combating and marginalizing true racism. She took a stand, and so can we.

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