Quotes From Black Activists That Are Timeless

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“I am no longer accepting the things I cannot change. I am changing the things I cannot accept.”


“Get in good trouble, necessary trouble, and help redeem the soul of America.” — U.S. Rep. John Lewis

The Washington Post via Getty Images


“I am no longer accepting the things I cannot change. I am changing the things I cannot accept.” — Angela Davis

Sophie Bassouls / Via Getty Images


“The better we understand how identities and power work together from one context to another, the less likely our movements for change are to fracture.” — Kimberlé Crenshaw


“If we have had no past, it is well for us to look hopefully to the future – for the shadows bear the promise of a brighter coming day.” — Frances Harper


“We are not makers of history. We are made by history.”— Martin Luther King Jr.

Robert W. Kelley / The LIFE Picture Collection via Getty Images


“The way to right wrongs is to turn the light of truth upon them.” — Ida B. Wells


“I have said this before, but it bears repeating: Women are not defined by who we are in relationship to. We are valuable and powerful and entertaining because we are.” — Beverly Bond


“My approach is to be honest-really honest-and consistent. That is what any growth will take. It is an issue I think [young] generation can be courageous enough to comb through.” — Michaela Angela Davis


“We are clear that all lives matter, but we live in a world where that’s not actually happening in practice. So if we want to get to the place where all lives matter, then we have to make sure that black lives matter, too.” — Alicia Garza


“One of the worst things about racism is what it does to young people.” — Patrisse Khan-Cullors


“Only when the oppressed are heard can we have an honest solutions based dialogue.” — Opal Tometi


“Get up. Stand up. Speak up. Do something.” — Tarana Burke


“Please try to remember that what they believe, as well as what they do and cause you to endure does not testify to your inferiority but to their inhumanity.” —James Baldwin

Sophie Bassouls / Getty Images


“It’s in the act of having to do things that you don’t want to that you learn something about moving past the self. Past the ego.” — Gloria Jean Watkins aka bell hooks


“You are not and yet you are: your thoughts, your deeds, above all your dreams still live.”— W.E.B Du Bois


“Don’t be in a hurry to condemn because he doesn’t do what you do or think as you think or as fast. There was a time when you didn’t know what you know today.” — Malcolm X

San Francisco Chronicle / Hearst Newspapers via Getty Images


“What the people want is very simple – they want an America as good as its promise.” — Barbara Jordan

Walt Disney Television Photo Arc / Walt Disney Television via Getty Images


“If there is no struggle, there is no progress.” — Frederick Douglass


“If I didn’t define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people’s fantasies for me and eaten alive.” — Audre Lorde

For more of BuzzFeed’s Black History Month content, click here.

Brooke Greenberg / BuzzFeed

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