“I wish more of us could understand that our increasing isolation, no matter how much it seems to express pride and self-affirmation, is not the answer to our problems. Rather, the answer is a revival of our ancient commitment to God, who rules over all the peoples of the world and exalts no one over any other, and to the moral and spiritual values which were once legendary in America. We must reach out our hand in friendship both to those who would befriend us and those who would be our enemy. We must believe in the power of education. We must respect just laws. We must love ourselves, our old and our young, our women as well as our men.”—Professional tennis player—and American hero—Arthur Ashe (1943-1993) and Arnold Rampersad, Days of Grace: A Memoir (1994)
Tennis great—and true gentleman—Arthur Ashe was born 75 years ago today in Richmond, VA. That city, segregated at the time of his birth, would one day erect a statue in his honor on a beautiful avenue arising from the ugly cause of secession: Monument Avenue. Like the title of Ashe’s memoir, the statue adds a “grace” note to an environment that can use it.
Post a Comment