Google Picks Rosa Parks Over World AIDS Day, World Still Spinning

Jill Baughman

Rosa Parks
Google paid tribute to Rosa Parks today with an illustration of a group of multi-shaded children running off a school bus, showing just how far we've come in only 55 years (can you believe it?). Fifty-five years ago today, Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat for a white passenger, leading to her arrest that started the 381-day boycott of the Montgomery, Alabama bus line, changing history forever.

Heroic doesn't even begin to describe this woman's actions. And it's wonderful that Google would honor her with the most sacred of all technological symbols: the Google Doodle.

The Google logo, which is what millions of folks see every day when they start up their Internet, has been the topic of much discussion, the stuff a techie geek's dreams are made of. But some are crying foul over this particular Doodle. If you want to know how exactly paying tribute to Rosa Parks would be controversial, keep reading.

Well, it's because Google seems to have paid no attention World AIDS Day. Alas, not a single red ribbon appears anywhere on the Google homepage. No mention of AIDS of any kind!

But guess who did?


Is this an overreaction to a simple Google Doodle? Most likely. Seriously, there isn't enough out there thanks to the Internet that people can waste their time complaining about. But let's remember some of the other more "controversial" and newsworthy Google Doodles.

Ah, remember this one? The Doodle in honor of Veterans Day made some people go crazy due to the hidden Islamic symbolism: the "e" as a crescent moon, half of the main symbol for the Islamic faith. Come on, it's just the bottom of the "e," people.

GoogleThis Doodle in honor of the 50th anniversary of the Sputnik satellite launch brewed up enough controversy that it was even covered by the LA Times back in 2007. The five or so critics said Google "honor[ed] an achievement by a totalitarian regime that was our Cold War enemy." Such a can of worms these Google Doodles can open!

GoogleGoogle stirred up even more controversy by saying that it believes in evolution with this  Doodle. In May 2009, scientists revealed the existence of the darwinius masillae fossil called Ida. The fossil was rather hyped up as the "missing link" that connected humans and primates, and some criticized Google as "celebrating evolution."


Poor Google, all they wanted to do was celebrate the birthday of Joan Miro, a surrealist artist, with this Doodle. But due to copyright violations, they were forced to take the logo down. Because the artists behind the Doodles incorporated so many of his works in the logo, his family cried foul. But isn't this a great way to expose millions of people who may have been unfamiliar with his work? Wonders never cease.


So clearly this is a day and age where people find ceaseless things to complain about. No matter what Google decides to do with its logo, there's no way it can appease the billions of people around the world. But all Google had to do was stick a red ribbon on its homepage somewhere to calm the dissenters. Or maybe the experts who came up with World AIDS Day should have designated it for tomorrow instead.

What do you think of Google not honoring World AIDS Day on its homepage?


Images via Google and Yahoo!

Read More