Booker T. Washington Essay

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Booker T. Washington was one of the most well-known African American educators of all time. Lessons from his life recordings and novelistic writings are still being talked and learned about today. His ideas of the accommodation of the Negro people and the instillation of a good work ethic into every student are opposed, though, by some well-known critics of both past and current times. They state their cases by claiming the Negro’s should not have stayed quiet and worked their way to wear they did, they should have demanded equal treatment from the southern whites and claimed what was previously promised to them. Also, they state that Washington did not really care about equality or respect, but about a status boost in his own life. Both…show more content…
There were laws against them and what they were or were not allowed to do and they were most definitely treated differently by their pale skinned neighbors. White southerners would never own them physically ever again, but they would own them mentally. Washington made his life’s purpose to get past the mind games and help other Negroes like himself do the same. They needed to work their way up and earn respect because there wasn’t a chance that the southerners were just going to give it to them. Washington acknowledged that forcing others into undeserved respect was never going to work when he stated, “The wisest among my race understand that the agitation of questions of social equality is the extremist folly, and that progress in the enjoyment of all the privileges that will come to us must be the result of severe and constant struggle rather than artificial forcing" (682). His people had to suffer. They had to start at the bottom and work their way up to the top day after day. Nothing came easy to them. In the first half of this quote, Washington makes it clear he believes that being pesky and bothersome about social status and fairness is a waste of time. One is just expelling breathe into the air when they worry about little things that do not matter in the long run of most people’s lives. He instead praises progress, defining it not only as the one thing that everyone should aspire for, but as the wonderful enjoyment of having failed and struggled many times, yet

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