I was not trying to be shocking, or to be a pioneer. I wasn't trying to change society, or to be ahead of my time. I didn't think of myself as liberated, and I don't believe that I did anything important. I was just myself. I didn't know any other way to be, or any other way to live.
I would like to be a valuable person, more than anything. I would judge a persons value by how prepared they are to give what they have to others. I feel a responsibility to keep open to the opportunities for change in my lifetime, and not to waste time by becoming fixated with my own identity and worth.
Identity would seem to be the garment with which one covers the nakedness of the self, in which case, it is best that the garment be loose, a little like the robes of the desert, through which one's nakedness can always be felt, and, sometimes, discerned. This trust in one's nakedness is all that gives one the power to change one's robes.
If any man claims the Negro should be content ... let him say he would willingly change the color of his skin and go to live in the Negro section of a large city. Then and only then has he a right to such a claim.
If none of us ever read a book that was 'dangerous,' had a friend who was 'different' or joined an organization that advocated 'change,' we would all be just the kind of people Joe McCarthy wants. Whose fault is that Not really McCarthy's. He didn't create this situation of fear. He merely exploited it, and rather successfully.
If some things aren’t going well, do something; never wait for the things to be ok by themselves! Do something; change the direction, change the parameters, change the criteria, change anything you wish to change! To change is to create a new destiny! Remember, you have thousands of different destinies; change is your instrument to switch from one destiny to another! Remember, you have thousands of different destinies!