Robert Coles have composed the story of Ruby Bridges, which revolves around a girl named Ruby. The story is about Ruby's courage, tolerance, bravery and calmness as she was fighting with the bitter truth of racism being created by worldly people (Ruby, 2015). This is a story, which depicts that in 1960, a judge named New Orleans gave an order to two of the public schools to give admission to four black girls in their schools. Ruby was six-year-old at that time and was included in those four girls (Ruby, 2015). However, she was sent to William Frantz Elementary school. All other children studying in that school were white and when their parents heard about that order given by the judge, they protested against that and were not satisfied to make their white children attending that school, where the black African girls were sent. So most of the parents brought out their children from that school and then Ruby was alone to attend the school; although she was badly threatened by the crowd standing outside the school. She had to bear negative remarks and humiliated behavior of an entire mob (Ruby, 2015).
It was a part of her fate that she had to face as her mother told that she must have faith in God and must trust His love that is why Ruby was able to face all the persecution with high spirit and courage (Buchmiller, 2011). Every day she had to confront with the crowd of white children parents, who screamed and yelled at her, but her spirit did not get down (Ruby, 2015). Daily she went to school alone to learn; only her teachers were there to attend her; however, due to the cruel attitude of the mob, one day she stopped in a crowd and prayed to God for their forgiveness, kindness and softhearted may from God. She remained calm and polite throughout the whole scenario. Because of the yelling crowd, Ruby came under the custody of federal marshals who used to drop her to school with security and safety. One of her teacher named Mrs. Henry was very kind to her as she used to play with Ruby during the time of recess, and that is why she was Ruby's favorite teacher. As the days passed on, Ruby's courage and eagerness to learn brought out fruitful results. As students who had left the school because of her presence, they began to return back to school and things got normal and settled because of her politeness, calmness, and endurance (Buchmiller, 2011).
This story is an excellent depiction of social and cultural differences that are made by human beings. It provides a better explanation of racism, due to which people are upon the basis of race, color, skin and caste. Ruby, who was an intelligent and bright child, was cruelly treated by the people just because she was a black African American (Buchmiller, 2011). The story seems to be simple and easy apparently, but it contains a deep meaning in it. The writer has described the ugly truth of racism in a better way. The story clearly depicts the idea that the standard of success is made upon the basis of skin and color, not on merit. In a sense success standard is actually determined by one's intelligence, courage and faith as being displayed in Ruby's personality. The moreover role of her teacher named Henry seemed to be positive and helpful for Ruby, who taught her lessons about equality of all humankind. Author's perspective reveals that people should not be with color, skin or ethnicity rather they should be treated equally regardless of their color and race because what matters is the beauty that exists inside any person (Moran, 2011). The overall story is a good example of building other children's character, imagination and thinking approach. As Ruby's character had been presented a real role model for other children; her courage, bravery, politeness and other traits can be followed and adopted by other children, which will help them in their character building while following such principles being illustrated by the author.
According to Buchmiller (2011), the book about Ruby’s life is a good understanding for the children of today’s era to learn about the sufferings of minorities or black African during 1960’s. As learning and re-reading this book, children will be able to get a connection to the past lessons being expressed by the writer. She is of the view that American society has changed much towards racism approach but still there are many pains and sufferings that can be there. In her opinion, this book is an insight into those children who had never been confronted with the racial differences and ethnic discrimination. From a religious point of view, the book sheds light on the beliefs and values that are part of Christianity, as how Ruby followed the principles of forgiveness and compassion to overcome the entire situation opposing to her. The book serves as a best example for teachers who are providing lessons regarding racial integration in the public schools.
Another source has provided an overall view of Ruby’s life that how brilliantly she handled all the opposing behaviors instead of escaping from the whole scenario she remained there in the school that threw light on her zeal and spirit for learning. After completing her grades in the William Frantz Public school, she got admission in an integrated high school. Furthermore, Ruby got a business education and became a travel agent. Moreover, she was working as a volunteer at William Frantz public school and did appreciate the supporting attitude of Robert Coles (Moran, 2011).
The persecution was not only limited and confined to Ruby. In fact, her family also suffered a lot in the name of racial hostility. As her father lost his job and got financial support from Ruby's grandparents who had to sell their land which have been preserved for twenty-five years. Moreover, their family was not allowed to enter the grocery store located in the community. However, as the time passed, they started getting support from many of their neighborhoods including both white and black. They provided Ruby's father with a job and her mother with a babysitter. Ruby also got the protection of federal marshals while traveling to school.
Moran (2011) has illustrated her reaction, recommendations, and problem related to Ruby’s story. She argued that faith and courage of that small six-year-old girl made me surprised and astonished that how she went through all of the circumstances mere based on her will, bravery and support of her family (Ruby, 2015). The overall story is fine at emotional and sentimental illustrations. She had given suggestions and recommendations that the book must be read by young people so that they might be able to learn about the importance of faith and courage being illustrated by Dr. Robert Coles. Moreover, this story is also a good example of keeping alive the memories of civil rights movement during 1960's. Regarding the problem about the book, she is of the view that the whole problem was just of screaming, persecution and mean behavior of the crowd that used to stand in the surroundings of the school in order to humiliate and yell upon Ruby (Ruby, 2015).
It can be that the whole book is an excellent portray of courage, bravery, compassion, and forgiveness. Dr. Robert Coles has succinctly described each aspect related to racism. Indeed, the book is compiled to read by everyone; they are parents, teachers or children. The book has shed light on the religious aspects of Christianity that is useful for Christian parents to get an in depth about their religion and can apply these aspects in their lives. In fact, Robert has critically analyzed the hypocrite society of America who considers themselves as a most civilized society. However, in reality they are responsible for creating discriminations based on color, ethnicity and race. History also revealed the persecution and brutality that has been carried out by white Americans against the blacks. Ruby’s character is a best role model and heroic personality for the little children learning in small grades because this is the age when children idealized their role models and are influenced by great and urging personalities (Ruby, 2015).
Buchmiller, D. (2011). Book Summary 3: The story of Ruby Bridges. http://dgooss.blogspot.com/2011/02/book-summary-3-story-of-ruby-bridges.html
Moran, A. (2011). The story of Ruby Bridges book summary. Shabbyblos.com. Teaching Empathy: The Story of Ruby Bridges. Little Rock Central High School National
Historic Site Lesson #5 National Park Service U.S. Department of the Interior http://www.nps.gov/chsc/learn/education/upload/rubybridgeseducation.pdf
Ruby Bridges. (2015). The Biography.com website. Retrieved 03:57, Apr 18, 2015, fromhttp://www.biography.com/people/ruby-bridges-475426. http://www.biography.com/people/ruby-bridges-475426.