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“For, in America, most of us begin on the wrong side of the railroad tracks. The meaning of America, what made it the wonder of history and the hope of mankind, was that we were free not to stay on the wrong side of the railroad tracks. If within us there was something that empowered us to grow, we were free to grow where we could.” — Whittaker Chambers, Witness
I recently finished reading Whittaker Chambers’s 1952 autobiography Witness for the first time. At just under 800 pages, it was a bit of a slog in a few places, but most of it captured a fascinating time in American history and the remarkable story of a man who went from an active follower of communism to its fearless opponent. I thought these lines, near the end of the book, are ones that should be used more today.