Posts Tagged ‘favorite quotes’

Happy 80th Birthday, Roberto Clemente!

August 18, 2014


Happy 80th Birthday to Roberto Clemente! As a baseball and Dodgers fan, Roberto Clemente is one of my all time heroes. This is what I wrote about Clemente last year, so will include it below in addition to couple videos on the pride of Puerto Rico. Enjoy!

Roberto was born in Carolina, Puerto Rico. At an early age, Roberto started playing baseball. In 1954, the Brooklyn Dodgers offered him a contract to play for their Triple-A team, the Montreal Royals. While with the Royals, Roberto didn’t play that much. He was often bench. Some say that the Dodgers were trying to guard him from the Rookie Draft of 1954. But, Clyde Sukeforth, a baseball scout for the Pittsburgh Pirates observed that Clemente was being bench and encouraged the Pirates to draft him. On November 22, 1954, the Pittsburgh Pirates selected Roberto Clemente in the Rookie Draft.

Roberto Clemente made his major league debut on April 17, 1955 against the Brooklyn Dodgers. He didn’t do well in his rookie season due to being involved in a car accident midway thru the season. Roberto Clemente really exploded with the Pirates in the 1960s. He led the Pirates to a World Series victory over the Yankees in 1960. Clemente led the National League in Batting in 1961, 1964, 1965 and 1967. He was the Most Valuable Player in 1966. He received numerous Gold Glove awards throughout the 60s for his outstanding defense. Clemente had a canon of an arm. He could throw a guy out at third base or home plate from right field. Players knew not to run on Clemente. He was one of the most amazing players to watch. He helped the Pirates win a second World Series in 1971 when the Pirates beat the heavily favored Baltimore Orioles in seven games. He was named World Series MVP after hitting .414 and hitting a solo home run in the Pirates 2-1 victory in game 7 of the World Series.

Roberto Clemente struggled with injuries and in 1972 he only played in 102 games but ended batting .312 in the season. Roberto collected his 3,000 hit, a double of the Mets’ Jon Matlack in front of the Pittsburgh Pirates fans at Three Rivers Stadium. That would end up being his last hit in the major leagues.

Roberto Clemente was not an ordinary baseball player. He used the diamond to expressed one of his many gifts. Clemente was a great soul. He cared for the most marginalized. He demonstrated tremendous compassion to the poor. Following the 1972 season, there was a catastrophic earthquake in Managua, Nicaragua. Upon realizing that some of the aid that he had previously sent to Nicaragua was not reaching those affected by the earthquake but intercepted by the Somoza government, Roberto Clemente boarded a small airplane that was taking aid packages to the victims. The plane left from Puerto Rico on December 31, 1972 but mechanical problems forced the plane to crash into the ocean off the coast of Isla Verde, Puerto Rico. Everyone from the Pirates attended Clemente’s memorial except his close friend and teammate, catcher, Manny Sanguillen, who decided to jump into the ocean in hopes of finding Roberto’s body. Roberto Clemente’s body was never found.

Roberto Clemente was inducted into Baseball’s Hall of Fame posthumously in 1973, becoming the first Latino to be elected into the Hall of Fame. Roberto was an amazing man. It takes a special man to go out of his way and coordinate emergency relief for victims of an earthquake in another country. Not only did Clemente orgazined relief funds but he put his family aside to personally go to Nicaragua and deliver the aid to the victims.

Major League Baseball (MLB) owes a lot to Roberto Clemente. I know that they have an award name after him for players who best follow Clemente’s humanitarian work but the award is not enough. It is time that Bud Selig, the commissioner of Baseball pays tribute to Clemente just the same way he did to Jackie Robinson. It is time for Clemente’s number 21 to be retired by all major league teams. Having his number 21 retired will send a powerful message that MLB truly honors and respects Clemente’s humanitarian work.

As a Jackie Robinson and Roberto Clemente fan, I think its only fair that 21 and 42 be the only numbers to be retired by all teams. Having 21 retired paves the way for MLB to have Roberto Clemente Days’ to be celebrated on August 18th as days where MLB will partner up with local community organizations and sponsor an organization that is doing amazing work on issues impacting that baseball’s town. In Los Angeles, it could be a grassroots organization working to end homelessness. In San Francisco, it could be an organization that advocates for equality when it comes to same sex marriages. In New York, it could be an organization that advocates for equal distribution of wealth and holds Wall Street thugs accountable to pay their share of taxes. In Pittsburgh, it could be an organization that brings awareness to the health conditions of the miners in Pennsylvania. If Major League Baseball had Roberto Clemente Days’ on August 18th, we will once again be demonstrating that Sports serves as a vehicle to address social issues that are not only impacting communities but putting the spotlight on community organizations who are making a difference in the lives of many Americans.

May we continue to keep Clemente’s legacy and spirit alive by living our lives for the greater good of others. Jackie Robinson once said, “A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives.” Roberto Clemente lived by that quote. More importantly, he lived by his own quote, “If you have a chance to accomplish something that will make things better for people coming behind you, and you don’t do that, you are wasting your time on this Earth,”

Long Live Mahatma Gandhi

October 2, 2013


Today is Mahatma Gandhi’s birthday. It is also International Day of Non-Violence. I can’t think of a better way to honor Gandhi than to continue dedicating myself to the non violent struggle for a better world.
Here are some of my favorite quotes by Gandhi taken from the book, Quotes of Gandhi, compile by Shalu Bhalla.

1. My religion is based on truth and non-violence. Truth is my God. Non-violence is the means of realising Him.
2. Democracy must in essence, therefore, mean the art and science of mobilising the entire physical, economic and spiritual resources of all the various sections of the people in the service of the common good of all.
3. A small body of determined spirits fired by an unquenchable faith in their mission can alter the course of history.
4. Ill-digested principles are, if anything, worse than ill-digested food, for the latter harms the body and there is cure for it, whereas the former ruins the soul and there is no cure for it.
5. To deprive a man of his natural liberty and to deny to him the ordinary amenities of life is worse than starving the body, it is starvation of the soul the dweller in the body.
6. The greater the institution, the greater the chances of abuse. Democracy is a great institution and therefore is is liable to be greatly abused. The remedy therefore is not avoidance of democracy but reduction of the possibility of abuse to a minimum.
7. Manliness consists not in bluff, bravado or lordliness. It consists in daring to do the right and facing consequences whether it is in matters social, political or other. It consists in deeds, not in words.
8. Non-violence and cowardice are contradictory terms. Non-violence is the greatest virtue, cowardice the greatest vice. Non-violence springs from love, cowardice from hate. Non-violence always suffers, cowardice would always inflict suffering. Perfect non-violence is the highest bravery. Non-violent conduct is never demoralising, cowardice always is.
9. Power is of two kinds. One is obtained by the fear of punishment and the other by acts of love. Power based on love is a thousand times more effective and permanent than the one derived from fear of punishment.
10. Non-cooperation is directed not against men but against measures. It is not directed against the Governors, but against the system they administer. The roots of non-cooperation lie not in hatred but in justice, if not in love.

Mahatma Gandhi…PRESENTE!!

Remembering Dr. Seuss

September 24, 2013

Today is the 22nd death anniversary of Dr. Seuss. He passed away at his home in La Jolla, CA from throat cancer.

Rather than writing a long post on Dr. Seuss, I will just add these two videos and include a link of some of his quotes.

Here are some of Dr. Seuss famous quotes:

Remembering Paulo Freire

September 19, 2013

Today is Paulo Freire’s birthday. He would have been 92 years old today. Instead of writing my thoughts on Paulo, I leave you all with these great videos. May we continue to carry out the legacy of Paulo Freire whether we are teachers, counselors, therapist, or simply in our relationships with our loved ones.

Here are my top 10 Paulo Freire quotes:
1.”Education either functions as an instrument which is used to facilitate integration of the younger generation into the logic of the present system and bring about conformity or it becomes the practice of freedom, the means by which men and women deal critically and creatively with reality and discover how to participate in the transformation of their world.”
2.”[T]he more radical the person is, the more fully he or she enters into reality so that, knowing it better, he or she can transform it. This individual is not afraid to confront, to listen, to see the world unveiled. This person is not afraid to meet the people or to enter into a dialogue with them. This person does not consider himself or herself the proprietor of history or of all people, or the liberator of the oppressed; but he or she does commit himself or herself, within history, to fight at their side.”
3. “…the fact that certain members of the oppressor class join the oppressed in their struggle for liberation, thus moving from one pole of the contradiction to the other… Theirs is a fundamental role, and has been throughout the history of this struggle. It happens, however, that as they cease to be exploiters or indifferent spectators or simply the heirs of exploitation and move to the side of the exploited, they almost always bring with them the marks of their origin: their prejudices and their deformations, which include a lack of confidence in the people’s ability to think, to want, and to know. Accordingly, these adherents to the people’s cause constantly run the risk of falling into a type of generosity as malefic as that of the oppressors. The generosity of the oppressors is nourished by an unjust order, which must be maintained in order to justify that generosity. Our converts, on the other hand, truly desire to transform the unjust order; but because of their background they believe that they must be the executors of the transformation. They talk about the people, but they do not trust them; and trusting the people is the indispensable precondition for revolutionary change. A real humanist can be identified more by his trust in the people, which engages him in their struggle, than by a thousand actions in their favor without that trust.”
4.”One cannot expect positive results from an educational or political action program which fails to respect the particular view of the world held by the people. Such a program constitutes cultural invasion.”
5. “[T]he interests of the oppressors lie in ‘changing the consciousness of the oppressed, not the situation which oppresses them.”
6. “If the structure does not permit dialogue the structure must be changed”
7. “The conviction of the oppressed that they must fight in their liberation is not a gift bestowed by the revolutionary leadership, but the result of their own conscientização.”
8. “Those truly committed to liberation must reject the banking concept in its entirety, adopting instead a concept of women and men as conscious beings, and consciousness as consciousness intent upon the world. They must abandon the educational goal of deposit-making and replace it with the posing of the problems of human beings in their relations with the world.”
9. “The object of a dialogical-libertarian action is not to ‘dislodge’ the oppressed from a mythological reality in order to ‘bind’ them to another reality. On the contrary, the object of dialogical action is to make it possible for the oppressed, by perceiving their adhesion, to opt to transform an unjust reality.”
10. “For if the people join to their presence in the historical process critical thinking about that process, the threat of their emergence materializes in a revolution. Whether one calls this correct thinking ‘revolutionary consciousness’ or ‘class consciousness,’ it is an indispensable precondition of revolution. The dominant elites are so well aware of this fact that they instinctively use all means, including physical violence, to keep people from thinking.”

Pictures of Jackie Robinson Rotunda at Citi Field

July 17, 2013

Pictures from Jackie Robinson Rotunda at Citi Field

Long Live George Carlin!

June 22, 2013

Today is the 5 year death anniversary of George Carlin. To celebrate his legacy, I have added this great video. Get ready to laugh!

One of the most revolutionary comedians to have ever lived. His comedy was hilarious filled with some knowledge.

Here is a blog post I wrote couple years ago filled with my 10 favorite George Carlin quotes:

Remembering Morrie Schwartz

November 5, 2011
Today is the death anniversary of Morrie Schwartz, a great soul who died at the young age of 79 years old from Lou Gehrig’s disease. Thanks to Ted Koppel who interviewed Morrie in his last remaining months that provided us with the opportunity to hear Morrie in his own words. Had it not been for Ted Koppel and Mitch Albom not coming across Koppel’s interview, we would have never had one of the most inspiring books ever written. Tuesdays with Morrie is one of my favorite books of all times. It is a book that I recommend people have. If folks have not read it, I have included a video of some of the amazing quotes from the book….To remember Morrie, I am including Morrie’s Lessons on Dying as told to Ted Koppel as well as the final scene from the movie, Tuesdays with Morrie. Enjoy.

Here is a great article. Enjoy.

Remembering Chief Albert Luthuli

July 21, 2011

Today is the 44th death anniversary of Albert Luthuli. He died as he was crossing some railroad tracks and got struck by a train and died. Chief Albert Luthuli was the first South African to win a Nobel Peace Price for his nonviolent anti-apartheid activism in 1960. He was a very respected and charismatic leader within the ANC. I admired him for the amazing man that he was.

Here is a link to read a biography on Chief Albert Luthuli
Here is a link of several of Luthuli’s famous speeches. Check them out. You will definately be inspired.

Here are some of Chief Albert Luthuli’s quotes. Enjoy.

“In Africa , as our contribution to peace, we are resolved to end such evils as oppression, white supremacy and racial discrimination, all of which are incompatible with world peace and security.”

“But now the revolutionary strings of our continent are setting the past aside. Our people everywhere, from north to south of the continent are reclaiming their land, their right to participate in government, their dignity as men, their nationhood. Thus in the turmoil of revolution, the basis for peace and brotherhood in Africa being restored by the resurrection of national sovereignty and independence, of equality and the dignity of man.”

“The world is now a neighbourhood, although unfortunately, people are not sufficiently neighbourly. We suffer at the present time from an over stress nationalism. Each such ultra-nationalist group seeks domination over others. I would like to see a South Africa that takes a serious interest in establishing peace and friendship in the world and not merely paying lip service to these important needs of man.”  

“Humanity longs for the time when the great Powers of the world will become great at heart and curb their ambitions, and pave the way for the settling of their differences in a statesman-like manner and so remove the threat of war.”

“no true peace and progress can be secured in any country as long as there are others in that country denied full democratic rights and duties.”


“As for myself, with a full sense of responsibility and a clear conviction, I decided to remain in the struggle for extending democratic rights and responsibilities to all sections of the South African community. I have embraced the non-violent Passive Resistance technique in fighting for freedom because I am convinced it is the only non-revolutionary, legitimate and humane way that could be used by people denied, as we are, effective constitutional means to further aspirations.”

 “We must fight on in all fronts along the path of non-violence and when, at times, the human weakness of despondency assails us, let us gain courage and inspiration, not only in the justice of our cause, but in its universality in all ages. We should be stirred to greater effort by the knowledge that it is our undeserved honour and privilege to be numbered among the followers of the heroes of freedom of all lands and ages: men and women who have so meritoriously championed the cause of freedom.”

 “Non-violent resistance in any provocative situation is our best instrument. Our strongest weapon is to acquaint our people and the world with the facts of our situation. No doubt we shall be accused of inciting the people and labelled as agitators and communists. We should never be deterred from our path of duty to our people and our country by these accusations. We should rest content in the conviction that we are here performing a divine duty when we struggle for freedom.”  

“Africa likes to enjoy peace, prosperity and freedom and would like to day itself with those forces of peace and freedom and so, does not like to be made a war zone in any war that warmongers may plunge the world in.”

 “We can assure the world that it is our intention to keep on the non-violent plane. We would earnestly request the powers that be to make it possible for us to keep our people in this mood.”


“Laws and conditions that tend to debase human personality – a God-given force – be they brought about by the State or other individuals, must be relentlessly opposed in the spirit of defiance shown by St. Peter when he said to the rulers of his day. “Shall we obey God or Man?”

“Let us set our spirit and conscience attune with the spirit of Divine Discontent that is within us and together with freedom-loving people elsewhere serve faithfully the cause of Freedom in the world in general, and in South Africa in particular, and so help our beloved South Africa to March honourably with the rest of the democratic world to the final liberation of all mankind.”

“It may well be that South Africa ‘s social system is a monument to racialism and race oppression, but its people are living testimony to the unconquerable spirit of mankind. Down the years, against, seemingly overwhelming odds, they have sought the goals of fuller life and liberty, striving with incredible determination and fortitude for the right to live as men – free men.”

“A regime that flouts world opinion cannot last. Nor will such a regime endure, when many of it’s own citizens are resolute and pledged to work for that end even at the cost of limitless sacrifice. For we are steeled by oppression and the daily sight of human values being ground underfoot only makes us cherish even more those values.”


“The germ of freedom is in every individual, in anyone who is a human being. In fact the history of mankind is the history of man struggling and striving for freedom, indeed the very apex of human achievement is FREEDOM and not slavery.”

“Friends, let us make no mistake, the road to freedom is always full of difficulties. Before we reach the summit of freedom, many will have fallen by the wayside as a result of enemy action, and others as through personal despondency may abandon the fight. But I call upon you as the true son of South Africa to be true to Africa , and count no sacrifice too great for her redemption.”

‘Let us march together to freedom saying: The road to freedom may be long and thorny but because our cause is just, the glorious end – Freedom – is ours”.

“Our interest in freedom is not confined to ourselves only. We are interested in the liberation of the oppressed in the whole of Africa and in the world as a whole.”

“Those of us who are in the freedom struggle in this country have really only one gospel. We may possibly shade it in different ways, but it is a gospel of democracy and freedom.”

 Source: (Accessed 8 March 2004)


This last song is called Nongqongqo and is performed by the late Miriam Makeba. It is the name of a prison in South Africa. I am including this song not only because I love it but because it makes reference of Albert Luthuli.
Here are the lyrics to the song. Thanks to my friend Akhona for the translation.


Bahleli bonke etilongweni, (they are together/they are sitting together in prison) 
Bahleli bonke kwa Nongqongqo  (they are sitting together at Nongqongqo)
Hi, hi, hi, ( ‘hi’, which in English would be pronounced or sounds like hee, is just a sound to mimick the idea of crying or pain. It’s like onomatopeia)

halala (‘halala’ is an exclamation of, usually, joy. I think in this context it’s just to exclaim the cry) 

Nanku X 2 (here he is)

Nanku uSobukhwe (here is Sobukwe)

Nanku, nanku etilongweni (here he is in prison)


 hi bawo Luthuli (‘bawo’, in Xhosa, means father/sir, and the equivalent in Zulu is ‘baba’; Luthuli was the president of the African National Congress and the 1960 Nobel Peace Prize recipient)

hayi uzotheni, uzotheni (‘hayi’ means no; ‘uzotheni’ is a word I’m not familiar with, but it sounds ambiguous and may mean ‘why do you deserve this?’ or ‘what have you done wrong?’/ ‘what is your sin?’) 


Nanko X2  (there he is) 

Nanko uMandela (there is Mandela)

nanko, nanko etilongweni (there he is, there he is in prison)

Nanko X2  (there he is)

Nanko uSisulu (there is Sisulu)

nanko, nanko etilongweni (there he is, there he is in prison)

yini wema-Afrika? (‘yini’ means what is it; ma-Afrika means people of Africa; “what is it Africans?” is used as a rhetorical question implying ‘what’s wrong with us Africans?’)

hayi uzotheni? uzotheni? (no, what have you done wrong, what have you done wrong?)

Bahleli bonke etilongweni, (they are together/they are sitting together in prison) 

Bahleli bonke kwa Nongqongqo  (they are sitting together at Nongqongqo)

Chief Albert Luthuli….PRESENTE!!!

Happy Birthday Frantz Fanon

July 21, 2011
Today is Frantz Fanon Birthday. He would have been 86 years old today. I want to pay tribute to this man by providing people with some of his famous quotes, his influence on national liberation struggles and finally leave you all with a documentary of him. Enjoy the documentary.

Here is a link of Frantz Fanon famous quotes. Enjoy
Fanon and his influence on anti-colonial and national liberation struggles
Long Live Frantz Fanon!!

Cesar Chavez…PRESENTE!!!

March 31, 2011
Alan Greth/Zuma Press (Cesar Chavez)

Today we honor the life and legacy of Cesar E. Chavez. I am inspired by how humble he lived his life. The passion that he demonstrated in the UFW Movement is a struggle that farm workers to this day are waging. Cesar Chavez work had its root in his spiritual formation. He understood the connection between spirituality and activism. It is important to understand that one should not isolate their spiritual teachings with their activism work. Our activism should have some type of spiritual foundation. When working for humanity, it automatically should be a spiritual journey. Many people when engaging in their activism fail to connect spirituality to the work they are doing. They feel that they are including religion. What people fail to understand is that spirituality is separate from religion. In fact, I often tell people that spirituality is as simple as anything that enhances ones’ spirit. I have found that spirituality is always present when trying to make this world a better place. I can’t work for the common good and not recognized the spiritual connections to the work I am doing. Spirituality and Activism are inter-connected. As a former Jesuit Volunteer, I found that this notion of spirituality and activism was best described by St. Ignatius of Loyola as being Contemplative in Action. We are all called to be Contemplatives in Action and Cesar Chavez did a great job at demonstrating that.

There is a Jesuit saying that says: ETAS or in other words, En Todo Amar y Servir (in all, Love and Serve). Cesar Chavez life was guided by ETAS. Below is Cesar Chavez famous prayer. There was a time where I used to read Cesar Chavez prayer on a daily basis before I started my day. May this prayer inspired us and continue to guide us in our quest to making this world a better place for the future generations. 

Prayer of the Farm Workers’ Struggle

Show me the suffering of the most miserable;
So I will know my people’s plight.

Free me to pray for others;
For you are present in every person.

Help me to take responsibility for my own life;
So that I can be free at last.  

Grant me courage to serve others;
For in service there is true life.

Give me honesty and patience;
So that I can work with other workers.

Bring forth song and celebration;
So that the spirit will be alive among us.

Let the spirit flourish and grow;
So we will never tire of the struggle.

Let us remember those who have died for justice;
For they have given us life.

Help us love even those who hate us;
So we can change the world.

Written by Cesar E. Chavez, UFW Founder (1927-1993)   

 Oracion del Campesino en la Lucha

Ensename el sufrimiento de los mas desafortunados;

Asi conocere el dolor de mi pueblo.

Librame a orar por los demas;
Porque estas presente en cada persona.

Ayudame a tomar responsabilidad de mi propia vida;
Solo asi sere libre al fin.

Concedeme valentia para servir al projimo;
Porque en la entrega hay vida verdadera.

Concedeme honoradez y paciencia;
Para que yo pueda trabajar junto con otros trabajadores.

Alumbranos con el canto y la celebracion;
Para que levanten el Espiritu entre nosotros.

Que el Espiritu florezca y crezca;
Para que no nos cansemos entre la lucha.

Nos acordamos de los que han caido por la justicia;
Porque a nosotros han entregado la vida.

Ayudanos a amar aun a los que nos odian;


Asi podremos cambiar el mundo.

Escrito por Cesar E. Chavez, Fundador de la UFW (1927-1993)

Here are some videos on Cesar E. Chavez. Enjoy.

Here are some of my favorite quotes from Cesar E. Chavez: 

“Our struggle is not easy. Those who oppose our cause are rich and powerful and they have many allies in high places. We are poor… but we have something the rich do not own. We have our bodies and spirits and the justice of our cause as our weapons.”

“Because we have suffered, and we are not afraid to suffer in order to survive, we are ready to give up everything – even our lives – in our struggle for justice.” 

“People who have lost their hunger for justice are not ultimately powerful….The love for justice that is in us is not only the best part of our being but it is also the most true to our nature.”


“Is it so much to ask that the poorest people of the land have a measure of justice?”

“We are confident. We have ourselves. We know how to sacrifice. We know how to work. We know how to combat the forces that oppose us. But even more than that, we are true believers in the whole idea of justice. Justice is so much on our side, that that is going to see us through.”

“We shall strike. We shall organize boycotts. We shall demonstrate and have political campaigns. We shall pursue the revolution we have proposed. We are sons and daughters of the farm workers’ revolution, a revolution of the poor seeking bread and justice.” 

“Non-violence, which is the quality of the heart, cannot come by an appeal to the brain.”

 “The first principle of non-violent action is that of non-cooperation with everything humiliating.” 

 “…people think non-violence is really weak and non-militant. These are misconceptions that people have because they don’t understand what non-violence means. Non-violence takes more guts, if I can put it bluntly, than violence. Most violent acts are accomplished by getting the opponent off guard, and it doesn’t take that much character, I think, if one wants to do it.”

 “Imagine the National Guard being called against a group of peaceful people. How far can we get; how disgraceful can it become? It’s the most disgraceful, the most wicked thing I’ve seen in all my years of organizing farm labor.”

 “Non violence means people in action. People have to understand that with non-violence goes a hell of a lot of organization.”

 “Non-violence exacts a very high price from one who practices it. But once you are able to meet that demand then you can do most things.” 

“Non-violence is a very powerful weapon. Most people don’t understand the power of non-violence and tend to be amazed by the whole idea. Those who have been involved in bringing about change and see the difference between violence and non-violence are firmly committed to a lifetime of non-violence, not because it is easy or because it is cowardly, but because it is an effective and very powerful way.”

“Violence just hurts those who are already hurt…Instead of exposing the brutality of the oppressor, it justifies it.”

“We are convinced that non-violence is more powerful than violence. We are convinced that non-violence supports you if you have a just and moral cause…If you use violence, you have to sell part of yourself for that violence. Then you are no longer a master of your own struggle.” 

“When workers fall back on violence, they are lost. Oh, they might win some of their demands and might end a strike a little earlier, but they give up their imagination, their creativity, their will to work hard and to suffer for what they believe is right.”