Emmett Till was lynched. Rosa Park refused to give up her seat. His murder and her arrest lit the match that fired up the 20th century civil rights movement. But before Emmett, there were other Emmetts, Black bodies swinging from trees, beaten to a pulp, left to die alone in the woods. And before Rosa, other Rosas decided they too, were fed up. They weren’t giving up their seats, not today, no, not ever.
Eric Garner couldn’t breathe in Staten Island. Freddie Gray broke his neck on an alleged “rough ride” in Baltimore. Michael Brown lay in the streets of Ferguson, baking under the Missouri sun. For four hours.
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