African American

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An African American (also Afro-American) is a person in the United States whose ancestors, usually in predominant part, were indigenous to Sub-Saharan Africa.

Sourced[edit]

  • I am America. I am the part you won't recognize. But get used to me. Black, confident, cocky; my name, not yours; my religion, not yours; my goals, my own; get used to me.
  • If we accept and acquiesce in the face of discrimination, we accept the responsibility ourselves and allow those responsible to salve their conscience by believing that they have our acceptance and concurrence. We should, therefore, protest openly everything... that smacks of discrimination or slander.
    • Mary McLeod Bethune, "Certain Unalienable Rights", What the Negro Wants, edited by Rayford W. Logan
  • The workings of the human heart are the profoundest mystery of the universe. One moment they make us despair of our kind, and the next we see in them the reflection of the divine image.
  • It is a peculiar sensation, this double-consciousness, this sense of always looking at one's self through the eyes of others... One ever feels his twoness,—an American, a Negro; two souls, two thoughts, two unreconciled strivings; two warrings ideals in one dark body, whose dogged strength alone keeps it from being torn asunder.
  • The seal and the constitution, reflects the thinking of the founding fathers that this was to be a nation by white people, and for white people. Native Americans, Blacks, and all other non-white people, were to be the burden bearers for the real citizens of this nation.
  • 'We, the people.' It is a very eloquent beginning. But when that document [the Preamble to the US Constitution] was completed on the seventeenth of September in 1787 I was not included in that "We, the people." I felt somehow for many years that George Washington and Alexander Hamilton, just left me out by mistake. But through the process of amendment, interpretation and court decision I have finally been included in 'We, the people.'
    • Barbara Jordan, Statement made on July 25, 1974 before the House Committee on the Judiciary
  • We have come over a way that with tears has been watered, We have come, treading our path through the blood of the slaughtered.
  • If you will protest courageously, and yet with dignity and Christian love, when the history books are written in future generations, the historians will have to pause and say, 'There lived a great people—a black people—who injected new meaning and dignity into the veins of civilization.'
  • The common goal of 22 million Afro-Americans is respect as human beings, the God-given right to be a human being. Our common goal is to obtain the human rights that America has been denying us. We can never get civil rights in America until our human rights are first restored. We will never be recognized as citizens there until we are first recognized as humans.
    • Malcom X, "Racism: the Cancer that is Destroying America", in Egyptian Gazette
  • Beware of Greeks bearing gifts, colored men looking for loans and whites who "understand the Negro".
  • Freedom is never given; it is won.
  • My father was a slave and my people died to build this country, and I'm going to stay right here and have a part of it, just like you. And no fascist-minded people like you will drive me from it. Is that clear?
    • Paul Robeson, testimony on June 12. 1956 before the House Un-American Activities Committee
  • If there ever was a monolithic ‘black America’—absolutely and uniformly deprived and aggrieved, with invariant values and attitudes—there certainly isn’t one now.
  • Never that! In this white man's world. They can't stop us, we been here all this time, they ain't took us out... They can never take us out! No matter what they say! About us being extinct, about us being.. Endangered species, we ain't neva gonn' leave this! We ain't never gonna walk off this planet.. Unless you choose to! Use your brains! Use your brains! It ain't them thats killing us, it's us that's killing us... It ain't them that's knockin' us off, It's us thats knockin' us off, I'm tellin you, you better watch it or be a victim... Be a victim in this white manz world.
  • We should emphasize not Negro History, but the Negro in history. What we need is not a history of selected races or nations, but the history of the world void of national bias, race hate, and religious prejudice.
    • Carter Woodson, "The Celebration of Negro History Week", Journal of Negro History (April 1927)

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