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Nobody can give you freedom. Nobody can give you equality or justice or anything. If you’re a man, you take it. Malcolm
Let’s argue against Malcolm X.
Counterclaim: This is one of those quotes where we have to be sensitive to the perspective from which it came. From the perspective of Malcolm X, it makes perfect sense and speaks to the experience of oppression all to familiar to African-Americans. To others, freedom is something you don’t have to fight for. It is simply given at birth and sustained throughout a lifetime–taken for granted. In that way there is a segment of the population who just wouldn’t be able to relate to the advice Malcolm X is giving.
And then there are the pacifists who think that no matter what you suffer at the hands of others, you should never respond with violence of any kind. The wisdom seems to run like this: accept your fate and realize what you can’t control.
Essential Question: Is freedom worth fighting for?
Think of opportunities in your curriculum where a person’s freedoms were taken away and the person had to figure out what to do about it.