Friday, July 10, 2009

Rosa Gibson (1930-2009)

Buffalo lost a true leader this week with the passing of Rosa Gibson. While she was alive, politicians would describe her as "crazy" because she had the nerve to hold them accountable and could not be bought off. I only met her once, briefly when I worked at the Old 1st Ward Community Center.

I remember when she was fined over some protest involving the garbage user fee and she brought in huge bags full of pennies to pay it. She really made a difference and didn't care who she offended, what office they held, or what race they were. In fact, Gibson and Jimmy Griffin worked together to fight the unfair garbage tax in the 90s'.

I could tell you about people that introduce themselves as activists and are always looking for government money. They are actually very good at promoting themselves. They say, "look at me! I just planted a flower! Now, give me funding." Gibson never had to do that because her work spoke for itself. I really hope there is someone out there to fill the huge void she leaves.

Gibson leaves legacy of activism*

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