Interview with Coretta Scott King
QUESTION 24
INTERVIEWER:

HOW DID YOU FEEL PERSONALLY WHEN THE BOYCOTT WAS OVER? DID YOU THINK YOU'D WON THE WAR?

Coretta Scott King:

I knew that this was the beginning of many struggles, but I thought that the fact that we were successful in desegregating the buses and that this led to not only Montgomery buses being desegregated, but it would, it was a, an action that would cause the desegregation of buses trans—and transportation, of transportation anywhere, wherever it was segregated. And we knew that once we broke the barrier, that it would be easier for other areas of segregation to be eliminated. And we knew that we would have to go on. At first, we didn't even ask for desegregation. We only asked for a, a more humane system of segregation on the buses. And when the opposition refused to grant that, then we realized that they wouldn't grant anything anyway, so we might as well ask for, you know, complete desegregation. And that's what we went for, and we realized we had to go for broke, so to speak. ** So, the, the fact that people were able to stick together for that length of time and that there was a favorable ruling from the courts on this, it meant that the courts—the climate was created around which the courts could act. And we realized that what we had to do was to take each situation, you know, separately, and continue to work on it until we had achieved that desegregation of public accommodations, and then the right to vote, and so on.