Patriotism and Revolution

Blacks have figured in situations where even their very lives are endangered or the sake of their ideals. Read about their opinions on patriotism and revolution.

A riot is at bottom the language of the unheard.
Martin Luther King, Jr, Where Do We Go From Here?

All men are prepared to accomplish the incredible if their ideals are threatened.
Maya Angelou

At fifteen life had taught me undeniably that surrender, in its place, was as honorable as resistance, especially if one had no choice.
Maya Angelou, I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings

Bitterness is like cancer. It eats upon the host. But anger is like fire. It burns it all clean.
Maya Angelou

Both tears and sweat are salty, but they render a different result. Tears will get you sympathy; sweat will get you change.
Jesse Jackson

CHANCE has never yet satisfied the hope of a suffering people.
Marcus Garvey, The Philosophy and Opinions of Marcus Garvey

Hearts are the strongest when they beat in response to noble ideals.
Ralph Bunche, Journal of Negro Education

Human salvation lies in the hands of the creatively maladjusted.
Martin Luther King, Jr

I am ready to act, if I can find brave men to help me.
Carter G. Woodson

It is important not only to have the awareness and to feel impelled to become involved, it's important that there be a forum out there to which one can relate, an organization a movement.
Angela Davis

It's just like when you've got some coffee that's too black, which means it's too strong. What do you do? You integrate it with cream, you make it weak. But if you pour too much cream in it, you won't even know you ever had coffee. It used to be hot, it becomes cool. It used to be strong, it becomes weak. It used to wake you up, now it puts you to sleep.
Malcolm X

Let me give you a word of the philosophy of reform. The whole history of the progress of human liberty shows that all concessions yet made to her august claims, have been born of earnest struggle. The conflict has been exciting, agitating, all-absorbing, and for the time being, putting all other tumults to silence. It must do this or it does nothing. If there is no struggle there is no progress.
Frederick Douglass, Civil Disobedience Manual

Nothing counts but pressure, pressure, more pressure, and still more pressure through broad organized aggressive mass action.
Philip Randolph

Quakers almost as good as colored.... They call themselves friends and you can trust them every time.Harriet Tubman
Harriet Tubman

Question everything. Every stripe, every star, every word spoken. Everything.
Ernest Gaines

Revolution is a serious thing, the most serious thing about a revolutionary's life. When one commits oneself to the struggle, it must be for a lifetime.
Angela Davis

Support the strong, give courage to the timid, remind the indifferent, and warn the opposed.
Whitney Young, Jr

The first lesson a revolutionary must learn is that he is a doomed man.
Huey Newton

The first lesson a revolutionary must learn is that he is a doomed man.
Huey Newton

The limitation of riots, moral questions aside, is that they cannot win and their participants know it. Hence, rioting is not revolutionary but reactionary because it invites defeat. It involves an emotional catharsis, but it must be followed by a sense of futility.
Martin Luther King, Jr., The Trumpet of Conscience

The quietly pacifist peaceful always die to make room for men who shout.
Alice Walker

The revolution has always been in the hands of the young. The young always inherit the revolution.
Huey Newton

The thing worse than rebellion is the thing that causes rebellion.
Frederick Douglass, Reconstruction

The walls, the bars, the guns and the guards can never encircle or hold down the idea of the people.
Huey Newton

The work of the political activist inevitably involves a certain tension between the requirement that position be taken on current issues as they arise and the desire that one's contributions will somehow survive the ravages of time.
Angela Davis

There is one thing you have got to learn about our movement. Three people are better than no people.
Fannie Lou Hamer

This crusade is much more important than the anti- lynching movement, because there would be no lynching if it did not start in the schoolroom.
Carter G. Woodson

Those who profess to favor freedom, and yet depreciate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground. They want rain without thunder and lightening. They want the ocean without the awful roar of its many waters. This struggle may be a moral one; or it may be a physical one; or it may be both moral and physical; but it must be a struggle.
Frederick Douglass, Civil Disobedience Manual

Usually when people are sad, they don't do anything. They just cry over their condition. But when they get angry, they bring about a change.
Malcolm X, Malcolm X Speaks

Victory or defeat? It is the slogan of all-powerful militarism in every belligerent nation. And yet, what can victory bring to the proletariat?
Rosa Parks

We do not condemn the preachers as an individual but we condemn what they teach. We urge that the preachers teach the truth, to teach our people the one important guiding rule of conduct - unity of purpose.
Malcolm X

We must reinforce argument with results.
Booker T. Washington

We need a common enemy to unite us.
Condoleezza Rice, Bush's war of terror, cover up

You're not to be so blind with patriotism that you can't face reality. Wrong is wrong, no matter who does it or says it.
Malcolm X