American Freedom Riders inspired Australians

Feb 21, 2015, 04:09 AM

ABC RN Phillip Adams 'Late Night Live' Thursday 19 February 2015

In 1961, young married couple Robert and Helen Singleton, joined the Freedom rides to protest against racial segregation in America's south. The U.S. Supreme Court had ruled that segregation on public buses and interstate transport, including at transit stops, was unconstitutional but southern states had ignored this ruling. As soon as they arrived in Jackson, Mississippi, Bob and Helen Singleton were arrested and incarcerated in the notorious Parchman Penitentiary, along with many other Freedom riders. Today, the Singletons say they are concerned about racial profiling and the use of force by police, as well as the 2013 U.S. Supreme Court decision blunting the Voting Rights Act of 1965, one of the civil rights movement’s most important victories.

Image: Freedom Riders, Robert and Helen Singleton (Source ABC RN/Alex McClintock)