Discussing Differences Quotations

John Ford - February 2005

I often avoid daily broadcast and print news because I'm put off by so much emphasis on,

Symptoms instead of Causes
Opinions instead of Facts
Anecdotal Examples instead of Trends
Personalities instead of Concepts
Fixations instead of Options

And, I heard one wag say he thought daily broadcast news was:
Ephemeral, Repetitive, Inconsequential, and Thin Entertainment


"If you remember your common bond of humanness, you will be less tempted to criticize, hurt, ridicule, ignore or judge others."




"It really doesn't make any difference what denomination you belong to as long as you are ashamed of it."


Tom Hayden


"Prophetic minorities instigated the American Revolution, ended slavery, achieved the vote for women, made trade unions possible, and saved our rivers from becoming sewers"


Rev. William Sloane Coffin's book, CREDO: 

          "Diversity may be the hardest thing to live with and the most dangerous thing to be without." (p.34). 

Johnny Cash - "Man in Black"


"I wear black for the poor and the beaten down ... for the prisoner who long paid for his crime ... for those who never read or listened to the words Jesus said ... for the sick and lonely old, for the reckless ones whose bad trip left them cold ... for the thousands who have died believing that the Lord was on their side."


"Ah, I'd love to wear a rainbow every day, and tell the world that everything's OK, But I'll try to carry off a little darkness on my back, 'til things are brighter, I'm the Man in Black."


Frederick Douglass - Speech to the Social Science Congress (date?)

"The habit of roaming from place to place is never a good one until man has endeavored to make his immediate surroundings in accord with his wishes.  The business of the government is to protect its citizens where they are, and not send them where they do not need protection."


Henry Clay - (dates?)


"I am no friend of slavery, but I prefer liberty of my own country to that of another people, and the liberty of my own race to that of another race.  The liberty of the descendants of Africa in the United States is incompatible with the safety and liberty of the European descendants.  Their slavery forms an exception resulting from a stern and inexorable necessity to the general liberty in the U.S."


Martin Luther King, Jr. - Chicago 1958


"Men hate each other because they fear each other," he said. "They fear each other because they don't know each other, and they don't know each other because they're separated from each other. And this is the reason that we must work at every moment to keep the channels of communication open."


National Conference for a New Politics - Chicago, 1967, Martin Luther King:


We have deluded ourselves believing the myth that capitalism grew and prospered out of the Protestant ethic of hard work and sacrifices.  The fact is that capitalism was build on the exploitation and suffering of black slaves and continues to thrive on the exploitation of the poor, both black and white, both here and abroad.... The way to end poverty is to end the exploitation of the poor.  Insure them a fair share of the government's services and the nation's resources.  We must recognize that the problems of neither racial nor economic justice can be solved without a radical redistribution of political and economic power.


Where Do We Go From Here, Chaos or Community?, Martin Luther King


It is sad that because of comfort, complacency, a morbid fear of Communism an dour proneness to adjust to injustice, the Western nations that initiated so much of the revolutionary spirit of the modern word have not become the arch anti-revolutionaries.  This has driven many to feel that only Marxism has the revolutionary spirit.  Communism is a judgment on our failure to make democracy real and to follow through on the revolutions that we initiated.  Our only hope today lies in our ability to recapture the revolutionary spirit and go out into a sometimes hostile world declaring eternal opposition to poverty, racism and militarism.


... We are called to play the Good Samaritan on life's roadside... one day the whole Jericho road must be transformed so that men and women will not be beaten and robbed as they make their journey through life.  True compassion is more than flinging a coin to a beggar; it understands that an edifice which produces beggars needs restructuring.


... When I speak of love, I am speaking of that force which all the great religions have seen as the supreme unifying principle of life.  Love is the key that unlocks the door which leads to ultimate reality.  This Hindu-Moslem-Christian-Jewish-Buddhist belief about ultimate reality is beautifully summed up in the First Epistle of Saint John: "Let us love one another: for love is of God: and everyone that loveth is born of God and knoweth God.  He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.... If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us."


... All life is interrelated.  The agony of the poor impoverishes the rich; the betterment of the poor enriches the rich.  We are inevitably our brother's keeper because we are our brother's brother.  Whatever affects one directly affects all indirectly.


Stride Toward Freedom, Martin Luther King


... any religion that professes to be concerned with the souls of men and is not concerned with the slums that damn them, the economic conditions that strangle them, and the social conditions that cripple them is  a dry-as-dust religion.  Such a religion is the kind the Marxists like to see - an opiate of the people.


Why We Can't Wait, Martin Luther King


Because Negroes can readily become a compact, conscious and vigorous force in politics, they can do more than achieve their own racial goals.  American politics needs nothing so much as an injection of the idealism, self-sacrifice and sense of public service which is the hallmark of our movement.


One aspect of the civil rights struggle that receives little attention is the contribution it makes to the whole society.  The Negro is winning rights for himself produces substantial benefits for the nation.


... The revolution for human rights is opening up unhealthy areas in American life and permitting a new and wholesome healing to take place.  Eventually the civil rights movement will have contributed infinitely more to the nation than the eradication of racial injustice.  It will have enlarged the concept of brotherhood to a vision of total interrelatedness.


Malcolm X Speaks, Malcolm X


The entire civil rights struggle needs a new interpretation, a broader interpretation....  We need to expand the civil rights struggle to a higher level - to the level of human rights.  Whenever you are in a civil rights struggle, whether you know it or not, you are confining yourself to the jurisdiction of Uncle Sam... When you expand the civil rights struggle to the level of human rights, you can then take the case of the black man in this country before the nations in the U.N.


A Gift of Black Spirit, W.E.B. Du Bois


[African spirituality is a] peculiar quality which the Negro has injected into American life and civilization.  It is hard to define or characterize it - a certain spiritual joyousness; a sensuous, tropical love of life, in vivid contrast to the cool and cautious New England reason; a slow and dreamful conception of the universe, a drawling and slurring of speech, an intense sensitiveness to spiritual values.


The black tropical worker... looked upon work as a necessary evil and maintained his right to balance the relative allurements of leisure and satisfaction at any particular day...The white laborer therefore brought to America the habit of regular, continuous toil which he regarded as a great moral duty.  The black laborer brought the idea of toil as a necessary evil ministering to the pleasure of life.  While the gift of the white laborer made America rich... it will take the psychology of the black man to make it happy.


W.E.B. Du Bois Speaks 1890-1919, Philip Foner Ed.


We are Americans, not only by birth and by citizenship, but by our political ideals, our language, our religion.  Farther than that, we are Negroes, members of a vast historic race that from the very dawn of creation has slept, but half awakening in the dark forests of its African fatherland.  We are the first fruits of this new nation, the harbinger of that black tomorrow which is yet destined to soften the whiteness of the Teutonic Today.  We are the people whose subtle sense of song has given America its only American music, its only American fairy tales, its only touch of pathos and humor amid its mad money-getting plutocracy.

The Souls of Black Folks
, by W.E.B. Du Bois


One ever feels his twoness - an American, a Negro; two souls, two thoughts, two unreconciled strivings; two warring ideals in one dark body, whose dogged strength alone keeps it from being torn asunder.


The history of the American Negro is the history of this strive, - this longing to attain self-conscious manhood, to merge his double self into a better and truer self.


"Our New Citizen" speech by Booker T. Washington, 1896:

Let the Negro, the North, and the South do their duty with a new spirit and new determination during this, the dawning of a new century, and at the end of fifty years a picture will be painted - what is it?  A new race dragged from its native land in chains, three hundred years of slavery, years of fratricidal war, thousands of lives laid down, freedom for the slave, reconstruction, blunders bitterness between North and South.  The South staggers under the burden; the North forgets the past and comes to the rescue; the Negro, in the midst, teaching North and South patience, forbearance, longsuffering, obedience to law, developing in intellect, character and property, skill and habits of industry.  The North and South, joining hands with the Negro take him whom they have wronged, help him, encourage him, stimulate him in self-help, give him the rights of man, and, in lifting up the Negro, lift themselves up into that atmosphere where there is a new North, a new South - a new citizen - a new republic.


"[Eventually, by genetic enhancement] the Gen Rich class and the Natural class will become......entirely separate species with no ability to cross-breed, and with as much romantic interest in each other as a current human would have for a chimpanzee."  Lee Silver, Gene Watch--A Bulletin of the Council for Responsible Genetics January 2001 Vol. 14, No. 1 p.1   "The median cost of one procedure is about $8000; and due to low success rates, many patients try several times before having a baby or giving up. IVF [ genetic enhancement ] requires not only huge sums of money, but also a privileged lifestyle that permits devotion to the arduous process of daily drug injections, ultrasound examinations and blood tests, egg extraction, travel to an IVF clinic, and often multiple attempts." Gene Watch January 2001 Vol 14, No.1 p.11


Keynote speaker, John Lafonte, at "Thy people Shall Be My People: Immigration and Citizenship in America" conference, Summer 2000, sponsored by Robert R. McCormick Tribune Foundation and held in Wheaton IL.


 "Are they joining us?"  "Are they becoming our people? Or are we becoming a transnational nation where people maintain their old loyalties while living here?" ...the traditional patriotic view of American is under attack.  We are told that Americans themselves should alter their values because of the demographic compulsion of immigration.  We are told that the dominant culture should be changed and that it should now be based on migrants linked to transnational entities."


"Instead of the common American culture to which decades of immigrants pledged fealty, today we have 'transnationality,' in which people can belong to two or even many putative nations."


"We Got To Have Peace"  by Curtis Mayfield

We gotta have peace

To keep the world alive

A war to cease


We gotta have joy

True to our hearts

With strength we can't destroy


People hear us

Through our voice

The world knows there's no choice


We're begging, "Save the children"

The little ones who just don't understand

Give them a chance

To breed their young and help purify the land


People hear us

Through our voice

The world knows there's no choice


Give us all an equal chance

It could be such a sweet romance

And the soldiers who are dead and gone

He's say, 

"You gotta have peace"


Upon becoming the first black voted into the Country Music Hall of Fame: "In our culture we're just ate up with what I call skin hang-ups", said the 62-year-old singer, Charlie Pride. "I'm glad I'm in the Hall of Fame.  I'm glad I'm right next to the people I love - Ernest Tubb, Marty Robbins, the whole bit.  I don't care if they're pink."  June 2000


"(English) is very unique in many ways.  It has embraced authors whose mother tongues are not English and their works have become mainstream.  By comparison, most other languages don't open themselves and offer that kind of possibilities.  English is the language of the common people."  Ha Jin, author of Waiting, winner of the National Book Award (2000).


"Every sect is a moral check on its neighbor. Competition is as wholesome in religion as in commerce." Walter Landor


"In each human heart are a tiger, a pig, an ass, and a nightingale; diversity of character is due to their unequal activity." Ambrose Bierce


"Our heritage is composed of all the voices that can answer our questions."  Andre Malraux


"Republics have a longer life and enjoy better fortune than principalities,  because they can profit by their greater internal diversity. They are the better able to meet emergencies." Machiavelli


"The more you live and the more you look, the more aware you are of a consistent pattern....as universal as the stars, as the tides, as breathing, as night and day....underlying everything. I would call this pattern and this rhythm an order. Not order, but an order. Within it exists an incredible diversity of forms. Without it lies chaos. I would further call this order....this incredible diversity held within one pattern...health. And I would call chaos....the wild cells of destruction...sickness. It is in the end up to you to distinguish between the diversity that is health and the chaos that is sickness, and you can't do this without a process of association that can link a bar of Mozart with the corner of a Vermeer painting, or a Stravinsky score with a Picasso abstraction; or that can relate an aggressive act with a Franz Kiline painting and a fit of coughing with a John Cage composition."  Marya Nannes (art critic and author)


“We hope the world will not narrow into a neighborhood before it has broadened into a brotherhood”  Lyndon Baines Johnson


“Modern industry has established the world market… All old-established national industries… are dislodged by new industries whose… products are consumed, not only at home, but in every quarter of the globe.  In place of old wants… we find new wants, requiring for their satisfaction the products of distant lands and climes.”  The Communist Manifesto, Marx/Engels


“Change: It’s a reality, not a choice.  But what will be its true driving force?  Cultures don’t become more uniform; instead, both old and new tend to transform each other.  The late philosopher Isaiah Berlin believed that, rather than aspire to some utopian ideal, a society should strive for something else: ‘not that we agree with each other,’ his biographer explained, ‘but that we can understand each other.”  National Geographic, Aug 1999


“Creativity thrives on diversity” (Gareth Morgan, 1989)… to adapt successfully to an external environment, a system must incorporate all the variety found in that environment.