I have a dream that one day little black
boys and girls will be holding hands
with little white boys and girls.

Martin Luther King, Jr.

"I Have a Dream"

One day our descendants will think it incredible that we paid so much attention to things like the amount of melanin in our skin or the shape of our eyes or our gender instead of the unique identities of each of us as complex human beings.

Franklin Thomas
Ignorance and prejudice are the handmaidens of propaganda.  Our mission, therefore, is to confront ignorance with knowledge, bigotry with tolerance, and isolation with the outstretched hand of generosity.  Racism can, will, and must be defeated.

Kofi Annan
I wish I could say that racism and prejudice were only distant memories. We must dissent from the indifference.  We must dissent from the apathy. We must dissent from the fear, the hatred and the mistrust…We must dissent because America can do better, because America has no choice but to do better.

Thurgood Marshall
The horror of class stratification, racism, and prejudice is that some people begin to believe that the security of their families and communities depends on the oppression of others, that for some to have good lives there must be others whose lives are truncated and brutal.

Dorothy Allison


Racism didn't magically go away just because we refuse to talk about it.
Rather, overt racial language is replaced by covert racial euphemisms
that reference the same phenomena-talk of "niggers" and "ghettos"
becomes replaced by phrases such as "urban," "welfare mothers," and
"street crime."  Everyone knows what these terms mean,
and if they don't, they quickly figure it out.

Patricia Hill Collins


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Even when I encountered racism outside Salmon Creek, it usually rolled
off me.  The worst of it often came from rednecks whipping past in rusted
pickups.  I looked at them and I looked at me--class leader, track star,
straight-A student--and their slurs about dirty Indians and drunk Indians
and dumb Indians were laughable.
   Mom says crap like that comes from people who've accomplished so
little in life that they feel the need to lift themselves above someone, anyone.
So they pick skin color or religion or sexual orientation and say, "Well, I
might not be much, but at least I´m not a. . ." I´d look at those guys,
and see the truth of her words.

Kelley Armstrong


Every miserable fool who has nothing at all of which they can be proud, adopts
as a last resource pride in the nation to which they belong; they are ready
and happy to defend all its faults and follies tooth and nail, thus
reimbursing themselves for their own inferiority.

Arthur Schopenhauer


Racism is a refuge for the ignorant.  It seeks to divide and to destroy.
It is the enemy of freedom, and deserves to be met head-on and stamped out.

Pierre Berton


We have made enormous progress in teaching everyone that
racism is bad.  Where we seem to have dropped the ball. . . 
is in teaching people what racism actually IS.

Jon Stewart

We have learned to see racism in the spittle-laced epithets of the
angry bigot.  We must also learn to see racism in the coded racial
entreaties promoted by calculating demagogues.

Ian Haney López


Racism does not have a good track record.  It's been tried out for
a long time and you'd think by now we'd want to put an end to it
instead of putting it under new management.

Thomas Sowell


We've got to face the fact that some people say you fight fire
best with fire, but we say you put fire out best with water.  We
say you don't fight racism with racism. We're gonna fight
racism with solidarity.

Fred Hampton


Every voice raised against racism chips away at its power.
We can't afford to stay silent.

Reni Eddo-Lodge
Why I'm No Longer Talking to White People About Race


Racism springs from the lie that certain human beings are less than fully human.
It's a self-centered falsehood that corrupts our minds into believing we are
right to treat others as we would not want to be treated.

Alveda King



Racism is taught in our society. . . it is not automatic.  It is learned
behavior toward persons with dissimilar physical characteristics.

Alex Haley

As I often say, we have come a long way from the days of
slavery, but in 2014, discrimination and inequality still saturate
our society in modern ways.  Though racism may be less blatant
now in many cases, its existence is undeniable.

Al Sharpton

Pit race against race, religion against religion, prejudice against
prejudice.  Divide and conquer!  We must not let that happen here.

Eleanor Roosevelt


As a nation, we began by declaring that "all men are created
equal."  We now practically read it "all men are created equal,
except negroes."  When the Know-Nothings get control, it will
read "all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners,
and Catholics."  When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating
to some country where they make no pretense of loving liberty--
to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure,
and without the base alloy of hypocrisy.

Abraham Lincoln
Lincoln Letters


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No one is born hating another person because of the colour of
their skin, or their background or their religion.  People learn to
hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for
love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.

Nelson Mandela

The one place where a man ought to get a square deal is in a courtroom,
be he any color of the rainbow, but people have a way of carrying their
resentments right into a jury box.  As you grow older, you'll see white
men cheat black men every day of your life, but let me tell you something
and don't you forget it--whenever a white man does that to a black man,
no matter who he is, how rich he is, or how fine a family he comes from,
that white man is trash.

Harper Lee
To Kill a Mockingbird


Racism is so universal in this country, so widespread,
and deep-seated, that it is invisible because it is so normal.

Shirley Chisholm


The plague of racism is insidious, entering into our minds as
smoothly and quietly and invisibly as floating airborne microbes
enter into our bodies to find lifelong purchase in our bloodstreams.

Maya Angelou

No human race is superior; no religious faith is inferior.
All collective judgments are wrong.  Only racists make them.

Elie Wiesel


Let us all hope that the dark clouds of racial prejudice will soon
pass away, and that in some not too distant tomorrow the
radiant stars of love and brotherhood will shine over our
great nation with all their scintillating beauty.

Martin Luther King, Jr.



Yes, life can be mysterious and confusing--but there's much of life that's actually rather dependable and reliable.  Some principles apply to life in so many different contexts that they can truly be called universal--and learning what they are and how to approach them and use them can teach us some of the most important lessons that we've ever learned.
My doctorate is in Teaching and Learning.  I use it a lot when I teach at school, but I also do my best to apply what I've learned to the life I'm living, and to observe how others live their lives.  What makes them happy or unhappy, stressed or peaceful, selfish or generous, compassionate or arrogant?  In this book, I've done my best to pass on to you what I've learned from people in my life, writers whose works I've read, and stories that I've heard.  Perhaps these principles can be a positive part of your life, too!
Universal Principles of Living Life Fully.  Awareness of these principles can explain a lot and take much of the frustration out of the lives we lead.


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