Talking Book

The Phoenix Rises


Dear Mr. Cable,

I am honored and humbled by your wise words. These “demons” you speak of has caused many a sleepless nights and the only solution I see for the paralleled color lines is through the wisdom of my great hero, abolitionist and freedom fighter Frederick Douglass. Douglass sees “Mulatto” as being the mixed race that will break the color line and I agree with him. Who knows one day we might even have a mulatto president in the White House. Wouldn’t that be great? I have written some more on the biography of Douglass I’m working on and I would appreciated your critique.

When Garrison pleaded for the rights of man, when Phillips with golden eloquence preached the doctrine of humanity and progress, men approved and applauded. When Parker painted the moral baseness of the times, men acquiesced shamefacedly. When Channing preached the gospel of love, they wished the dream might become a reality. But, when Douglass told the story of his wrongs and those of his brethren in bondage, they felt that here indeed was slavery embodied, here was an argument for freedom that could not be gainsaid, that the race that could produce in slavery such a man as Frederick Douglass must surely be worthy of freedom. What Douglass’s platform utterances in later years lacked of the vehemence and fire of his earlier speeches, they made up in wisdom and mature judgment. There is a note of exultation in his speeches just after the war. Jehovah had triumphed, his people were free. He had seen the Red Sea of blood open and let them pass, and engulf the enemy who pursued them.

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