Home | Search | About | Fidelio | Economy | Strategy | Justice | Conferences | Links
Amelia Boynton Robinson Brings the Fight for the
Dec. 7, 2005
The following is the speech given by Mrs. Robinson at a political meeting in Berlin, Germany, sponsored by the political party headed by Helga Zepp-LaRouche. She was introduced by Mrs. LaRouche, and greeted with a lengthy ovation.
I bring you greetings from the real America. America who believes in the land of the free and the home of the brave. It is very understandable, that what is going on now in the United States of America is not because of the fact the real Americans are happy, or are in it. When they woke up and found what was going on, after the Twin Towers were bombed, we all said, I believe this is an inside-job. And to think that the man who sits in the Presidency, who has been selected, not really elected, was the man who decided at the beginning, that he would finish the job that his father started, in going into Iraq and destroying it.
We have to realize how we struggled. Because, the United States is a melting pot. Nobody can say, no race can say, that weve made America what it is. And because of the fact that people have come into the United States, from the beginning in 1492, they came to build a country where there would be freedom, where there would be justice, where there would be understanding.
And people have fought for this. Then, we have Abraham Lincoln, who believed that he wanted the Union to stay together, that the slaves who were brought there would not be slaves any longer. And they fought for it, the Emancipation! But the system was so rotten with discrimination and segregation, that they began to realizethat is, in the South particularlythey began to realize that they did not have to work, because those who owned the property, owned thousands of acres, and the people from Africa as chattel.
Some people from Africa paid for their freedom. Some went to the United States free. Some of them, from the beginning, wanted to free the other people, and we have such people before the Emancipation, who fought for it, asked for it, and finally we got it, but it was not gotten just because of the fact they wanted it. By blood, sweat, and tears, we received Emancipation.
Because of the ignorance of the plantation owners, they held themselves down to keep others down. As Booker T. Washington said, you can not rise by holding somebody down, because you have to stay down there with them.
Ill give you an example of the way it was, when I woke up and found out there was such a thing as segregation. I didnt find out that when I came up. I came up in Savannah, Georgia, where Im sure there was segregation, but my mother, who was very much outstanding in the stamping out discrimination, never told us that there was a difference. But we fought. We didnt fight by ourselves: We had people from all over the world who came to help us. And this fight started with Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass, who begged, who wroted letters to Congress and the Senate, asking that there be no discrimination and no difference because of the persons race.
But one of the first things that happened, that kind of cracked the ice, was when Franklin Delano Roosevelt became Presidentand he did not become President because everybody wanted him. He had to fight. And he was a man of faith, and a man of determination, and a man who had a program. And of course, his program paid off. If you could compare what happened before Roosevelt came in, and what Roosevelt did, you wonder: What is wrong with America, that they have destroyed the programs that really made America a great, great country?
What Roosevelt did
Before Roosevelt came in, I was working, and I knew, I worked with people, and I saw people who were jumping out of windowsin fact, I heard of those who were jumping out of windows because they lost their money. I had the opportunity to put money in the bank, and like millions of other people, they lost it. People were on the street, they had nothing to eat, and nowhere to go; so they just lived on the street, and lived on whatever they could find, even in the garbage can.
Just think of some of the programs which caused the United States of America to be lifted up, and be a shining light for all other countries.
One of the first things he did, knowing that people had nowhere to go, they were sick, they were dying and nobody cared; so, these are some of the programs that he brought to fruition and put it into working, when he became the President. The Hill-Burton program which opened and operated hospitals all over the country, that people would be able to have a hospital that they could go to. Today, hospitals have been closed, and people dont have hospitals within sometimes 75 miles. The Medicare program, where people put the money into a fund, where, after they reach 65 years of age, theyre able to go to the hospital, and go to doctors and get their medicine. The Medicaid program was for those who could not work, and they were elderly people, yet they got the same medicine and the same care that anyone else did. The welfare program for those who were sick and had nobody to take care of them.
The WPA program, the PWA program where everybody could find a job, and if you werent prepared, then there were different places that they could goand they were helped if they didnt have the moneywhere, whatever their potentials were, whatever they wanted to be, there was a place where they could go, and where their potentials were awakened, and they were able to prepare themselves and go out into the world and make a decent living. There were finance programs, RCA programs, peace programs, Good Neighbor policy programs, ERA programsand these are just a few of what Roosevelt put in operationand the Bretton Woods program.
One of the most outstanding programs, or lets say two of them, were the reconstruction programs, where homes that were falling down, were able to be reconstructed. Then, the infrastructure program. One of the biggest programs that we had, was the program where they built dams. Water was overflowing, rivers were running wild, people had no electricity in the rural district, and no [clean] water. So [FDR had] the reconstruction program, the ones where they built the dams, many dams all over the United States, and one dam would cause more than 10,000 people to have jobs.
I am going to name theseand Im going to stop in the middle so it will be interpreted. Many of these people who did not have jobs, professional people, and all of them, could get jobs in some form. To build one dam, we had to have surveyors, realtors, blueprint readers, artists; areas had to be prepared, timber had to be cleared, lumber companies would have to employ more people; machine tools [were needed]; steel mills had to be opened; bulldozers that could do the heavy-duty work had to be built; special trucks, excavations of the places where the dams would be; transportation for all of these places, bringing whatever was needed to build these great dams. Special roads would have to be built, or were built, for heavy-duty work; housing for displaced people, realtors had to get up and go to work, and find places for these folk and even build other houses; schools had to be opened in areas where the children were. There was more gas to be used; plastic has to be made, according to the specification; sand and gravel had to be gotten and that meant great sand and gravel pits and quarries had to be found; cement had to be made. Steel, of course, had to be made, and a number of other things.
But more than 10,000 people on each dam could go to work, and there were many of them. And if they had no particular way to get there, they were raised so they could get to their jobs. If they had no potential whatsoever, but they had an idea what they wanted to be, under Franklin Delano Roosevelt, everybody could work, regardless of color, creed, denomination, or condition of birth.
Fighting, and faith
But Roosevelt didnt just walk into the Presidency. He had quite a few obstacles, but he had faith. He had determination, that he would be able to have his program become a reality. And I dont know whether you realize it or not, but faith is a very strong thing: Faith is something that will carry us on, and if we dont have it, we will not be able to accomplish whatever we accomplish.
I can tell you from example, what faith does, and Ill give you one example: When my husband and I decided that we were going with a lady to an island, the island 15 miles away from Savannah, Georgia. The boat that the man got for us, he said that the owner of the boat went up and down that river all of the time. The river was just off of the ocean, where the big ships would come from New York, Boston, and places like that. And there was what we called a pass, where those big ships would come into this Wright River, which was the name of it, and into Savannah, where they would dock.
Just as we had gone a few feet beyond the pass, then a big boat, not recognizing the small craft, plowed through the water. The first wake almost filled the boat with water; the second one filled it. The next wake, or wave (whichever you call it), turned the boat over. When it turned it over, we were washed away from the boatthere were six of us in this group. I looked around and I saw the owner of the boat with his head down, and he had a life jacket on, but we had no life jackets, and I could not swim. The water was 42 degrees. The shallowest part of that river was 65 feet, and here, I could not swim; the others could not swim, having no life jacket on. I kept on saying to God, that I cant afford to drown. I just can not afford to drown! Ive got too much to do!.
Now, I had nothing to do! My husband and Ithis husband and I had been married only four years, and everything was behind us. I kept on telling GodI didnt have time to ask Him, but I just told Him, that I could not afford to drown: I have too much to do. Behind us, we had gotten the Civil Rights bill, we had gotten the Civil Rights Act, and I had been beaten and recovered. So, I just figured that now was the time for me to rest on my laurels. Instead of that, it was a different thing, because I kept on saying to God that I could not afford to drown. And, it seems as though He sent his angels. And they lifted me up out of that water, when around us, these six people, only two of us livedthe rest of us drowned. And that other person lived for a while and then died from trauma. Later on, they took us to the hospital, and we found out that one person who had a little life in her had passed while she was in the hospital.
And then, I decided I would just go on with life. Having married again a man who wanted to go to New York, and who liked to travel, we went to New York to the Shriners meeting. And he was not a Shriner, and he didnt think he could get in. We spent our time going around, looking at the displays that the different companies had. Then, somebody came to me, and said, We have a blueprint to put water across the Sahara desert. And I listened for the first time. Then, he said, we have a program to drive drugs out of a section or community in New York, were going to invite you to come on and be at this meeting were having. I accepted the invitation, with the encouragement of my late husband, and this young man invited me to come to Virginia to a meeting.
I went to that meeting, though I knew nothing about this man by the name of Lyndon LaRoucheI hadnt even heard about anything that would give me any foundation. But, because of the fact of knowing, that when people dont want you to enjoy something, or to get the real essence of what that person is, theyll never say anything good about you. They didnt say anything good about Rev. Smith (I dont know whether you know him or not); they didnt say anything good about Martin Luther King; they didnt say anything good about anybody who would release the trouble and the discrimination, and cause people to be free. So, when I heard of this man, I decided that I would go to this meeting and find out who Lyndon LaRouche is.
I found a man, whowhen I look back of the 30 years that my husband and I worked to free people on the farms, having them to get a place of their own, teaching them how to fill out the applicationsI found that those 30 years was wrapped up in what Lyndon LaRouche was saying. I found what we did under Martin Luther King and Southern Christian Leadership Conference, the beatings we got, the going to jail that the young people as well as the old people got, even the killings of both black and whites, because we were disturbing their way of life in the South: all of that was enfolded in what Lyndon LaRouches program was.
My mind reflected back to 20 minutes having been in that water, 42 degrees, asking God to please let me live, Ive got too much to do. And when I got to know this organization, when I saw that young people, the people who are carrying the burden, when I hear each time the message which is a message you dont get anywhere else, I say to myself, this is what God had for me to do, when I said, I have too much to do. And today, it is just a wonderful thing to work with this organization, to work with the young people, to help themand they give me more than I give them, because they give me youth and the determination to keep on going. And I give them whatever I have dreamed through the years that I have lived.
Faith, not Fear
But there are many people who are afraid of this organization, because it fights against the rotten system. I dont know if you have it in your country or not, but our country does not want to be disturbed. The few people who are controlling the country, do not want anybody to pull the cover from off of the corruption, and that is what Lyn, the young people, the Youth Movement, are doing.
Because, first, they do not fear. They realize how detrimental fear is. Fear kept African-Americans down for nearly 200 years. They were afraid because the system said, Ill kill you. But they were not brave enough to say, Well, Ill take it.
But fear is something that starts in our minds, and it starts when we are afraid of little thingsbugs, afraid of the dark, or whatnot. But it grows! Unless we do something, it grows. And when we become adults, often, if we dont do away with that fear, we become paranoid. We become sensitive, every little thing hurts our feelings. We doubt anything but what we want. And we become a gossiper.
If we have known anybody that seems to be successful, we become jealous of that person. And that jealousy turns into hate. And the hate is like a beaver that dams up a river; its like a mole thats going underground, but you can see the effects of it. And finally, it becomes a cancer, that nobody can cure but the individual and Godthey become sometimes living, they live in Hell; they become a living Hell because theyre not happy. And when you find people trying to take advantage of other people, they hate what they are doing, you cant get a good conversation out of themtheyre living in Hell.
If each and every one of us were to realize the importance of spreading good news, it will help us individually. And it will not only just help us, it will give us faith in what we do, because faith is just the opposite of fear, just as good is the opposite of evil. We have to try to get faith deeply rooted in our minds. Often, one thinks that there is an idea, and that idea is born, and he plans to develop that idea. The idea becomes a reality. The reality becomes a successall because he has faith in what he does.
Number 1, we have to love ourselves. Faith loves himself. Faith is strong. Faith is challengingyou just dont expect something to come your way, it is challenging. Get up and challenge it. And faith will insist. It is adventurous, and faith will tackle any problem that it wants to tackle.
Faith grows courage. Faith believes. Faith will listenyou dont have to take everything everybody says, but one of the greatest virtues in the world, is to be able to listen and accept or reject whatever it might be.
Faith loves people. In faith, there is strength. Faithand you have heard this before, Im surefaith is the substance of things hoped for, and the evidence of things unseen.
If we want to overcome a problem, we will have to have faith that we can overcome that problem. Because, in doing so, we have to realize that we cant be complacent, we cant be powerless if we have faith. And if we have faith in ourselves, well have to do that. Well have to realize, when somebody comes to us and says, I dont want my child to be in that organization, let them know the importance of being a part of an organization that is growing. Its not only a political organization: Its an organization that exposes every one of the youth who is in this movement to astronomy, to all kinds of languages, to culture of all description, to be able to make comparison with the right and the wrong. And its something you dont get in a classroom.
And it is so much better for these young people to come in and help. And the thing about it is, they will stoop down and pick up the fallen, and help them to be somebody, and to do something.
These young people will soon take the place of chancellors, or parliamentarians, of presidents, and in every fieldit wont be longthey will be prepared then, and they will realize that theyre not doing this for themselves. And you will find that these young people are the key, that unlocks the doors of the hearts of hate, fear, and anger, and replaces it with love. They are the match to light the fire of war against injustices, and mistreatment; and politically doing things that ought not to be done; that others can not get any information as they do in locking down many of the things that are going on and people really dont know, because it is censored. They are the ones that will help, to not only light the fire, but to keep it ablaze. They are the wind that is like a gentle breeze, that is being inhaled as a breath of love. And as it is being inhaled, it is a medicine of love, and justice. For justice is sure to come, when these young people are making contact with others. These young people will teach us, that we are on the wrong road. And if we listen to them, we will be able to get a sunshine of warmth of love in our hearts.
Thank you. [thunderous ovation]
Meet Amelia Boynton Robinson:
The Schiller Institute
Thank you for supporting the Schiller Institute. Your membership and contributions enable us to publish FIDELIO Magazine, and to sponsor concerts, conferences, and other activities which represent critical interventions into the policy making and cultural life of the nation and the world.
Contributions and memberships are not tax-deductible.
Home | Search | About | Fidelio | Economy | Strategy | Justice | Conferences | Links