Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Quote of the Day: Up from Slavery

 

“More than once I have tried to picture myself in the position of a boy or man with an honored and distinguished ancestry which I could trace back through a period of hundreds of years, and who had not only inherited a name, but a fortune and a proud family homestead; and yet I have sometimes had the feeling that if I had inherited these, and had been a member of a more popular race, I should have been inclined to yield to the temptation of depending upon my ancestry and my color to do that for me which I should do for myself. Years ago I resolved that because I had no ancestry myself I would leave a record of which my children would be proud, and which might encourage them to still higher effort.”

— Booker T. Washington, Up From Slavery, 1901

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  1. RightAngles Member

    A true example for all.

    • #1
    • June 11, 2020, at 9:54 AM PDT
    • 7 likes
  2. Mark Camp Member

    Lilly, thank you so much for this beautiful text.

    When I read it to my wife just now, she said that she remembered reading “Up From Slavery” in 4th grade, in Montgomery, AL, when they studied Booker T. Washington. It would have been in the early ’60s.

    She’s been profoundly saddened by the malicious and utterly false accusations which have been made against us by ignorant, malevolent spoiled children who know nothing about the heroes of the quest for racial harmony, like Washington, and nothing about us and what we feel and believe.

    • #2
    • June 11, 2020, at 10:06 AM PDT
    • 8 likes
  3. TBA Coolidge
    TBA

    Great words from a great man. 

    It is painful to compare the words and deeds of modern leaders with those of the past. 

    • #3
    • June 11, 2020, at 10:34 AM PDT
    • 6 likes
  4. Richard Fulmer Member

    Here are some quotes from Frederick Douglass:

    Knowledge makes a man unfit to be a slave.

    The man who will get up will be helped up; and the man who will not get up will be allowed to stay down.

    Liberty is meaningless where the right to utter one’s thoughts and opinions has ceased to exist. That, of all rights, is the dread of tyrants. It is the right which they first of all strike down. They know its power. Thrones, dominions, principalities, and powers, founded in injustice and wrong, are sure to tremble, if men are allowed to reason… Equally clear is the right to hear. To suppress free speech is a double wrong. It violates the rights of the hearer as well as those of the speaker.

    • #4
    • June 11, 2020, at 11:33 AM PDT
    • 10 likes
    • This comment has been edited.
  5. PHCheese Member

    My Irish grandfather would probably been better off as a slave. He and his family were starving in Ireland and no one cared if they lived or died. If he had been a slave he would have had a value to someone. His family sold all they had to send him to America with the idea he would bring them later. They died while he was in route. He was born in 1870 five years after our first civil war. He had no part in slavery here, nor do I.

    • #5
    • June 11, 2020, at 1:30 PM PDT
    • 8 likes
  6. Arahant Member

    Many people today are without the history that Washington had. They might as well not have “an honored and distinguished ancestry which I could trace back through a period of hundreds of years, and who had not only inherited a name,” because they know nothing of it. Everything they know came from Marx and other such people who never grew up. The father of one of our members refers to such people as “tall toddlers.”


    This is the Quote of the Day. We still have seven openings on our sign-up sheet. If you have a quotation to share, why not sign-up right now?

    • #6
    • June 11, 2020, at 1:59 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  7. Lilly B Coolidge
    Lilly B

    PHCheese (View Comment):

    My Irish grandfather would probably been better off as a slave. He and his family were starving in Ireland and no one cared if they lived or died. If he had been a slave he would have had a value to someone. His family sold all they had to send him to America with the idea he would bring them later. They died while he was in route. He was born in 1870 five years after our first civil war. He had no part in slavery here, nor do I.

    Are you already familiar with Harry Jaffa’s discussion of the influence of the Irish experience in the Lincoln-Douglas debates? I don’t pretend to be an expert, but I recall that Douglas was representing a large Irish constituency that often had far worse lives than slaves of the same time period. That’s not at all an argument for preserving or extending slavery, but it’s interesting historical context.

    • #7
    • June 11, 2020, at 2:08 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  8. PHCheese Member

    Lilly B (View Comment):

    PHCheese (View Comment):

    My Irish grandfather would probably been better off as a slave. He and his family were starving in Ireland and no one cared if they lived or died. If he had been a slave he would have had a value to someone. His family sold all they had to send him to America with the idea he would bring them later. They died while he was in route. He was born in 1870 five years after our first civil war. He had no part in slavery here, nor do I.

    Are you already familiar with Harry Jaffa’s discussion of the influence of the Irish experience in the Lincoln-Douglas debates? I don’t pretend to be an expert, but I recall that Douglas was representing a large Irish constituency that often had far worse lives than slaves of the same time period. That’s not at all an argument for preserving or extending slavery, but it’s interesting historical context.

    Thanks LB, I’ll check it out.

    • #8
    • June 11, 2020, at 2:30 PM PDT
    • Like
  9. Randy Webster Member

    Lilly B: More than once I have tried to picture myself in the position of a boy or man with an honored and distinguished ancestry which I could trace back through a period of hundreds of years,

    My guess is that there are few whites who can do this. I know I can’t. I don’t even want to talk about the fortune.

    • #9
    • June 11, 2020, at 4:50 PM PDT
    • 4 likes
  10. Taras Coolidge

    Mark Camp (View Comment):

    Lilly, thank you so much for this beautiful text.

    When I read it to my wife just now, she said that she remembered reading “Up From Slavery” in 4th grade, in Montgomery, AL, when they studied Booker T. Washington. It would have been in the early ’60s.

    She’s been profoundly saddened by the malicious and utterly false accusations which have been made against us by ignorant, malevolent spoiled children who know nothing about the heroes of the quest for racial harmony, like Washington, and nothing about us and what we feel and believe.

    I’m guessing public schools today no longer teach Booker T. Washington.

    • #10
    • June 11, 2020, at 4:52 PM PDT
    • 4 likes
  11. Arahant Member

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    Lilly B: More than once I have tried to picture myself in the position of a boy or man with an honored and distinguished ancestry which I could trace back through a period of hundreds of years,

    My guess is that there are few whites who can do this. I know I can’t. I don’t even want to talk about the fortune.

    I can. That and $5 will get me a chai latte.

    • #11
    • June 11, 2020, at 5:20 PM PDT
    • 4 likes
  12. Lilly B Coolidge
    Lilly B

    Taras (View Comment):

    Mark Camp (View Comment):

    Lilly, thank you so much for this beautiful text.

    When I read it to my wife just now, she said that she remembered reading “Up From Slavery” in 4th grade, in Montgomery, AL, when they studied Booker T. Washington. It would have been in the early ’60s.

    She’s been profoundly saddened by the malicious and utterly false accusations which have been made against us by ignorant, malevolent spoiled children who know nothing about the heroes of the quest for racial harmony, like Washington, and nothing about us and what we feel and believe.

    I’m guessing public schools today no longer teach Booker T. Washington.

    My kids certainly haven’t read him, and definitely not in 4th grade. Our high school is starting an African American Studies/History class, so I would hope he’s included there (I won’t be surprised if he isn’t). Sadly, my Kindle suggested a list of “anti-racism books to read right now” and Booker T. and many black authors were glaringly absent. To be as charitable as possible in interpreting the selected books, the publishers are probably promoting modern authors. 

    • #12
    • June 11, 2020, at 7:40 PM PDT
    • 4 likes
  13. Sweezle Member

    An American hero proves in words and deeds what the American dream truly is. 

    • #13
    • June 11, 2020, at 7:40 PM PDT
    • 4 likes
  14. Lilly B Coolidge
    Lilly B

    Mark Camp (View Comment):

    Lilly, thank you so much for this beautiful text.

    When I read it to my wife just now, she said that she remembered reading “Up From Slavery” in 4th grade, in Montgomery, AL, when they studied Booker T. Washington. It would have been in the early ’60s.

    She’s been profoundly saddened by the malicious and utterly false accusations which have been made against us by ignorant, malevolent spoiled children who know nothing about the heroes of the quest for racial harmony, like Washington, and nothing about us and what we feel and believe.

    I’m so sorry. It’s profoundly sad. I think so much of what’s happening has been fostered in the school system for a generation. The ignorance has been cultivated. 

    • #14
    • June 11, 2020, at 7:46 PM PDT
    • 4 likes
  15. Henry Castaigne Member

    When I think of Booker T. Washington, I think of a builder. He wanted to build up people, business, colleges and churches. His son was notably, a maker of bricks. 

    Building up and not burning down is how we all get better. We should all want to build.

    • #15
    • June 11, 2020, at 11:40 PM PDT
    • 7 likes
  16. Charlotte Member
    Charlotte Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Further proof that the past is a foreign country. Can you imagine a public figure saying something like this today?

    You cannot.

    • #16
    • June 12, 2020, at 2:39 PM PDT
    • 3 likes