I have always counted it a great privilege that my name became associated, comparatively early in my life, with what has always seemed to me a great and important public interest, namely, a form of education which seems to me best suited to fit a recently enfranchised race for the duties and responsibilities of citizenship in a republic. The fact that I have been compelled to raise the larger part of the money for establishing this kind of education by direct appeals to the public has made my name pretty generally known. I am glad that this is true, for through the medium of the newspapers I have been able to get in touch with many hundreds and thousands of persons that I would never have been able to reach with my voice. . .Full Story»
There are some opportunities that come to the boy or girl who is born poor that the boy or girl who is born rich does not have. In the same way there are some advantages in belonging to a disadvantaged race. The individual or the race which has to face peculiar hardships and to overcome unusual difficulties gains an experience of men and things and gets into close and intimate touch with life in a way that is not possible to the man or woman in ordinary circumstances. . .
I have never at any time asked or expected that any one, in dealing with me, should overlook or forget that I am a Negro. On the contrary, I have always recognized that, when any special honour was conferred upon me, it was conferred not in spite of my being a Negro, but because I am a Negro, and because I have persistently identified myself with every interest and with every phase of the life of my own people.
As this thought got hold in my mind and I began to see further into the nature of the task that I had undertaken to perform, much of the political agitation and controversy that divided the North from the South, the black man from the white, began to look unreal and artificial to me. It seemed as if the people who carried on political campaigns were engaged to a very large extent in a battle with shadows, and that these shadows represented the prejudices and animosities of a period that was now past. . .
More in this category
- Booker T. Washington: Turning Disadvantages into Opportunity
- Booker T. Washington: Learning From People
- John Wayne on Liberty, Freedom, and the Role of Government
- Autobiography of Thomas Jefferson — The Declaration of Independence
- General Eisenhower’s Christmas Message to Troops During the Battle of the Bulge, 1944
- Watch the Christmas Broadcast from Apollo 8