In America one drop of black ancestry makes you black.
I'd say imagine that you wake up one morning when you're going through a midlife crisis. You're getting divorced. Your kids won't speak to you. Their faces are covered with acne, and you have to decide why you should get out of bed. That's the career you should pick. The one that keeps you going no
I first learned that there were black people living in some place called other than the United States in the western hemisphere when I was a very little boy, and my father told me that when he was a boy about my age, he wanted to be an Episcopal priest, because he so admired his priest, a black man
Conspiracy theories are an irresistible labor-saving device in the face of complexity.
The Right insists that anyone can escape poverty by working hard but that is simply not the case.
One principle I've been fighting for that doesn't endear me to a lot of people is that black people can be just as complicated and screwed up as white people. Our motives can be just as base and violent. Suffering does not necessarily ennoble you.
Lincoln had a tremendous capacity for personal growth - more than any other American President.
I think that the roots of racism have always been economic, and I think people are desperate and scared. And when you're desperate and scared you scapegoat people. It exacerbates latent tendencies toward - well, toward racism or homophobia or anti-Semitism.
In fact, the class divide in the black community is now seen by some as a permanent aspect of our existence.
My mom, God rest her soul - she liked nicknames. In the womb she named me Skip. There was another black guy in Piedmont, W.Va., and his name was Skip. They called him Big Skip, and I was Little Skip.
The precise form of an individual's activity is determined, of course, by the equipment with which he came into the world. In other words, it is determined by his heredity.
Our society is driven today by so much ethnic discord. We have Black Lives Matter, which I praise and celebrate. We have the demagogues stereotyping Muslims and resurrecting racist stereotypes they used to visit on us. The larger goal is to show that we are all the same, we all come from Africa, and
I give a speech to the black freshmen at Harvard each year, and I say, 'You can like Mozart and ice hockey...' - and then I used to say 'golf,' but Tiger took over golf! - 'and Picasso and still be as black as the ace of spades.'
So, the kind of precious memories about being black for my generation won't exist for my kids' and grandkids' generations unless we preserve them through fiction, through film, through comic books, and every other form of media we can possibly utilize to perpetuate the story of the great African-Ame
There haven't been fundamental structural changes in America. There's been a very important symbolic change and that is the election of Barack Obama. But the only black people who truly live in a post-racial world in America all live in a very nice house on 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
It turns out one of my ancestors fought in the Continental Army, so I was inducted into the Sons of the American Revolution.
The sad truth is that the civil rights movement cannot be reborn until we identify the causes of black suffering, some of them self-inflicted. Why can't black leaders organize rallies around responsible sexuality, birth within marriage, parents reading to their children and students staying in schoo
The Dominican Republic says 'We're black behind the ears.' And in Mexico, 'there's a black grandma in the closet.' They know, they've just been intermarrying for a long time. But if we did the DNA of everyone in Mexico a whole lot of people would have a whole lot of black in them.
My family and our neighbors and friends thought of Africa and its Africans as extensions of the stereotyped characters that we saw in movies and on television in films such as 'Tarzan' and in programs such as 'Ramar of the Jungle' and 'Sheena, Queen of the Jungle.'
America is the greatest nation ever founded. The ideals are the greatest ever espoused in human history, and we just need the country to live up to them. But what I worry about are the 1 million black men in the prison system.
My goal is to get everybody in America to do their family tree.
So, Mexico, Brazil, they wanted their national culture to be 'blackish' - really brown, a beautiful brown blend. And finally, I discovered that in each of these societies the people at the bottom are the darkest skinned with the most African features.
Patriotism is best exemplified through auto-critique. When you're willing to stand up within the group and say, 'It is wrong for Black people to be anti-Semitic,' or 'It is wrong for America to discriminate against persons of African descent and made them slaves and based its wealth upon free labor,
You have to have a canon so the next generation can come along and explode it. Henry Louis Gate
People who own property feel a sense of ownership in their future and their society. They study, save, work, strive and vote. And people trapped in a culture of tenancy do not.
For as long as I can remember, I have been passionately intrigued by 'Africa,' by the word itself, by its flora and fauna, its topographical diversity and grandeur; but above all else, by the sheer variety of the colors of its people, from tan and sepia to jet and ebony.
Censorship is to art as lynching is to justice. Henry Louis Gate
One must learn how to be black in America.
I'm looking forward to the time when we all look like Polynesians.
My father was the funniest man I ever met. He made Redd Foxx look like an undertaker. Henry Louis G