I just recently learned that Rosa Parks had a much more involved, covert, and clandestine role in the Montgomery Bus Boycott than previously known. Far from being a fed-up domestic worker who had simply had it with the unfair practices of Alabama and segregation in general, Parks played an active role in assisting King and the SCLC in staging the now-famous protest.
In an interview on NPR following Parks' death in 2005, the Reverand Jesse Jackson had this to say:
I would not like the projection of Rosa Parks being this mild, meek, almost simple woman who stepped into history and became famous. That's not true. Rosa Parks was a militant woman, very clear about what she was doing.
I would ask Dr. King to further go into detail about Parks's role in the planning and execution of this historic, world-changing event. I would want to get to know her as a passionate leader rather than the mythological aura that has enveloped her story.
You can read the full interview with Rev. Jackson and Rep John Conyers here.