As I stood and gave the eulogy for young Michael Brown last week, I kept thinking about the fact that this child should have been in college instead of laying in a coffin.
I was born 50 years after slavery, in 1913. I was allowed to read. My mother, who was a teacher, taught me when I was a very young child. The first school I attended was a small building that went from first to sixth grade. There was one teacher for all of the students. There could be anywhere from 50 to 60 students of all different ages.
Every boy in a free country ought to be instructed in boxing, wrestling, and the use of weapons. Every young man ought to be drilled. Every householder ought, at least, to have a right to own a rifle, and should know how to make cartridges.
We shouldn’t have got married, really. Shouldn’t have got married. Too young. Not ready for it.
When this boy was brought to Dr. Young, his name being William, the same as mine, my mother was ordered to change mine to something else. This, at the time, I thought to be one of the most cruel acts that could be committed upon my rights.
I wanted to find ways for colleges and universities to become involved with public schools to help young people prepare for college.
In my life, I’ve seen enormous increase in the consumption of poetry. When I was young, there were virtually no poetry readings.
There’s nothing I believe in more strongly than getting young people interested in science and engineering, for a better tomorrow, for all humankind.
Donning a glove for a backyard toss, or watching a ball game, or just reflecting upon our baseball days, we are players again, forever young.
Laughter is ever young, whereas tragedy, except the very highest of all, quickly becomes haggard.