Rosa Parks Released from Prison by Jeff Provine
says: we're very pleased to present a new story from Jeff Provine's
excellent blog This
Day in Alternate History. Please note that the opinions expressed in
this post do not necessarily reflect the views of the author(s).
On December 2nd 1968,
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after nearly thirteen years of
prison, Rosa Parks, the famous Black woman whose refusal to comply to city
ordinance that Blacks sit in the back of city buses began the campaign of
Non-Violent Resistance that gradually began to end the legal position of
minorities as second-class citizens in the CSA.
While her action seemed minimal, it prompted action from leaders among the
Black community, particularly a young Martin Luther King, Jr., whose
speech in Richmond at the Jefferson Memorial on a racially united South
where all men (and women) were truly created equal. Though it would not be
until 1971 that the Civil Rights Amendment was passed after the harsh
treatment of caused negative sentiment toward racism (also, the year of
death of Confederate President Hugo LaFayette Black, seemingly symbolic of
the end), the long, slow, but promising transition to the end of "American
Apartheid" was slow but gave promising steps throughout. Rosa Parks, for
example, was freed two years early after mounting non-violent protest and
letter-writing campaigns that swamped the Alabama State Prison system.
"Would any of these people even have been alive?
A world where the CSA won the Civil War would be very, very different.
IIRC Malcolm X was the son of a West Indian immigrant; he might not have
even been born b/c his parents either never met or had different children.
And he's just one example." - reader's commentAlthough the South's
transition to equality had its bloody times, it was peaceful compared with
the near-civil war in the United States. "That's a
valid point, though I note that some very well-known authors (Harry
Turtledove, for one) have ignored that objection. In the novel "The Two
Georges," for example, in which the American Revolution was averted
throough diplomacy, there are revcognizable counterparts of JFK, Richard
Nixon and Martin Lther King Jr. A point to bear in mind is that people
with those names might still have been born, but might not be quite the
same people even though they shared (some of) the same ancestors. " -
reader's commentsAfter the CSA gained its independence, slavery
continued to be legal until it ecame economically imfeasible and
transformed into an apprenticeship system. Black freedmen migrated
northward to full citizenship rights for years until the immigration
crackdowns of the 1880s. Cities such as Detroit, Chicago, New York, and
Washington, D.C., gained large Black populations that were initially
embraced but soon seen as neighborhoods of trouble due to unemployment and
low standards of living (brought on mainly by racism prevalent among
"True. It's definitely a point of Butterfly Effect,
though there would have to be some very certain genealogy and mathematical
calculation to see whether people would/wouldn't be born. Some things
could obliterate the potential birth, others might go through regardless.
I like the "shared name" excuse." - reader's commentsUnder the
leadership of men such as Malcom X and through the Black Panthers
movement, violence rose up continually among the Black population in
resistance to oppression. Spread of the Ku Klux Klan in the 1930s in
states such as Iowa and Indiana, which had sent vast numbers of soldiers
years before in an attempt to free the slaves, now sought to keep down
their Black neighbors. National Guard troops were routinely called in to
place cities under martial law throughout the 1950s and '60s.
Seeing the plight of his Northern brothers Martin Luther King, Jr., began
a campaign for solidarity, but only with those who would join him in
gaining justice without bloodshed. He joined with others in organizing the
Freedom Rides aimed at Chicago in 1961, using newly gained rights of
interstate transit among Blacks to present a non-violent protest of
violence on both sides. The buses were notoriously attacked shortly after
crossing the Kentucky border.
After King's assassination in 1968 in Tennessee as he prepared a tour of
the North, his Dream would live on and finally see conclusion with a
transition to legal equality. While the question of social equality
remains unanswered even after two generations, the turbulent times at
least made progress toward a "day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of
former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down
together at the table of brotherhood".
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Today in Alternate History web site.
Jeff Provine, Guest Historian of
Today in Alternate History, a Daily Updating Blog of Important Events In
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Imagine what would be, if history had occurred a bit
differently. Who says it didn't, somewhere? These fictional news items
explore that possibility. Possibilities such as America becoming a Marxist
superpower, aliens influencing human history in the 18th century and Teddy
Roosevelt winning his 3rd term as president abound in this interesting