Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Arkansas Republican Assemblies Has a Post about the Little Rock Nine Fiftieth Anniversary

Commemorating 50th Anniversary of the integration of Little Rock Central High School
by U.S. Rep. John Boozman (R-AR): On Sept. 25th, our state – and our nation – recognized nine brave men and women who, when they were teenagers, came forward to claim their Constitutional right to an equal education despite protests, threats of violence and even the Arkansas National Guard. This date is not only a red-letter date in our state’s history, but a seminal event in the movement to unite our country as truly one people, indivisible.Fifty years ago, Minnijean Brown, Elizabeth Eckford, Ernest Green, Thelma Mothershed, Melba Pattillo, Gloria Ray, Terrence Roberts, Jefferson Thomas, and Carlotta Walls, climbed the steps of Central High School. Few other moments in our history can compare to the ascent made by the Little Rock Nine. It was an ascent to a new plateau in the relations of Americans to their fellow citizens and a new plateau on the path to the American we now know. On Sept. 25, 1957, when the Nine made it to the top of those Central High School steps, they stood in a place where, up till that point, others said they could not go. Then, they did what was, in fact, the most important thing that day: They went inside to learn. While Central High School will always be the event at the forefront of our memories when it comes to the history of desegregation, it is my hope that, as we remember the Nine, we can also remember the other schools in our state which preceded them, including Fayetteville, Hoxie, and the community of Charleston – who first broke down the barrier in Arkansas on Aug. 23, 1954. As we spend this day reflecting on our past, we should remember all the brave children, families, and educators across the state that – by their courage – set in motion a chain of events which created the Arkansas of the present and will resonate in the Arkansas of the future. [Source

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