Birth and death are doors through which you pass from one dream to another. Someone is born on Earth in France as a powerful king, rules for a time, then dies. He maybe reborn in India, and travel in a bullock cart into the forest to meditate. He may next find rebirth in America as a successful businessman; and when he dreams death again, reincarnates perhaps in Tibet as a devotee of Buddha and spend his entire life in a lamasery. Therefore hate none and be attached to no nationality, for sometimes you are a Hindu, sometimes a Frenchman, sometimes an Englishman, or an American or a Tibetan. What is the difference? Each existence is a dream within a dream, is it not?
The way I was taught, being black was a plus, always. Being a human being, being in America, and being black, all three were the greatest things that could happen to you. The combination was unbeatable.
American democracy is a chess-game in which pawns imagine themselves to be free individuals with wills of their own: that delusion is one of the rules of the game, without which the game could not continue. I doubt anyone, no matter how sharp and sharp-tongued, could succeed in getting across to high school students how vital an acute mind is for just keeping a grip on one's life and earnings in our mendacious politics and economics. No wonder our school system is devoutly dedicated to demoralizing and blunting such minds.
Oh beautiful for smoggy skies, insecticided grain, For strip-mined mountains majesty above the asphalt plain! America, America, man sheds his waste on thee, And hides the pines with billboard signs, from sea to oily sea!