There is a sense in which the United States ambassador speaks to the United States, as well as for the United States. I have always seen my role as a thermostat rather than a thermometer. So I'm going to be actively working... for my own concerns. I have always had people advise me on what to say, but never on what not to say.
Some kind of affirmative action is important in a democracy and for economic competitiveness and national security. The Army was the first to realize that you had to have desegregation of a military to have it working properly.
Affirmative action is an effort to include every aspect of society in the decision making.
What we forget is that African Americans made the largest contribution to America, economically, before the Civil War of any sector of society. I read that the railroads were worth about $2 billion, but slavery was a $3 billion asset.
If Congress can move President's Day, Columbus Day and, alas, Martin Luther King's Birthday celebration for the convenience of shoppers, shouldn't they at least consider moving Election Day for the convenience of voters?
When people ask where I studied to be an ambassador, I say my neighborhood and my school. I've tried to tell my kids that you don't wait until you're in high school or college to start dealing with problems of people being different. The younger you start, the better.
I've always seen the Olympics as a place where you could act out your differences on the athletic field with a sense of sportsmanship and fairness and mutual respect.
I wasn't predicted to be anything. I just followed an inner spirit, and it put me in the right place and the right time. I didn't want to be the mayor of Atlanta. I didn't want to run for Congress. I didn't want to work for Martin Luther King Jr. I wanted to work close to him and be a writer and write about the movement.
I've been dyslexic and had Attention Deficit Disorder at some time in my life. I still read with a highlighter, but I've always loved to read.
Having personally watched the Voting Rights Act being signed into law that August day, I can't begin to imagine how we could have all been so wrong in believing that more Americans would vote once they were all truly free to do so.
Our children lost our direction because they have been compromised. They have found freedom at the ballot box, and then they have taken on plastic chains around their minds and souls and mortgage their future on credit cards. They have to learn better - they have to learn the value of ideas and health as opposed to wealth.
I have committed my life to helping the poor, and I believe that if more companies followed Wal-Mart's lead in providing opportunity and savings to those who need it most, more Americans battling poverty would realize the American dream.
One of the principles of nonviolence is that you leave your opponents whole and better off than you found them.
Profits should be for a purpose. Profits should be productive. You should make money for producing benefits that make the world a better place. Making money is a good thing when it is made in service to humanity or the democracy.
Nobody black had learned anything from the 'Letter from the Birmingham Jail' or from the 'I Have a Dream' speech. That was a revelation of white people.
Freedom is a struggle, and we do it together. Not only together as black citizens, but black and white together.
Slavery didn't break up the black families as much as liberal welfare rules.
If I wanted to develop a scenario to destroy America, I would do what the Republicans are doing. Take the brightest and best young black men off the streets, put them in jail, make them meaner than hell for 8 or 10 years and then turn them lose in a society where there are plenty of guns for them to play with.
Nothing is illegal if one hundred businessmen decide to do it.
President Jimmy Carter was a citizen soldier. Ironically, he was considered weak because he didn't kill anybody and he didn't get anyone killed.