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“I think I am a radical. I have never deviated from that. By radical, I mean someone trying to go to the root of things.”

Bill Ayers

“If you read the literature of Soviet Communism, you see a dogma that’s chilling. On the other hand, if you read the literature of anti-communism, it’s every bit as dogmatic.”

Bill Ayers

“Chicago ’68 was a relatively small demonstration for its time, but I’ve talked to millions of people who claim they were there because it felt like we were all there. Everyone from our generation was there and was at Woodstock.”

Bill Ayers

“When I was young, communism, which had a certain allure to me, was clearly a failed experiment in the Soviet Union and in China. And yet, anti-communism was as bad.”

Bill Ayers

“One hundred years from now, we’ll all be dead. It’s hard to believe. One hundred years from now, everyone we see every day will be gone.”

Bill Ayers

“Andrew Breitbart, self-described media mogul, had several screws loose or missing and was the grinning bomb-thrower of the radical right. He was the attack dog kept on a tight leash and brought out on special occasions to hiss and to menace.”

Bill Ayers

“Jane Addams, founder of Hull House, once asked, “How shall we respond to the dreams of youth?” It is a dazzling and elegant question, a question that demands an answer–a range of answers, really, spiraling outward in widening circles.”

Bill Ayers

“You cannot live a political life, you cannot live a moral life if you’re not willing to open your eyes and see the world more clearly. See some of the injustice that’s going on. Try to make yourself aware of what’s happening in the world. And when you are aware, you have a responsibility to act.”

Bill Ayers

“I breathed the air of deliverance through books, and through books I leapt over the walls of confinement.”

Bill Ayers

“I was arrested in 1965 for opposing the war in Vietnam. There were 39 of us arrested that day. But thousands opposed us. And the majority of the people in the country supported the war then.”

Bill Ayers

“Imperialism or globalization – I don’t have to care what it’s called to hate it.”

Bill Ayers

“We should open our eyes, see what’s in front of us, and act.”

Bill Ayers

“You will be raising these kids in your mind your whole life. And they will change you. Your little contribution to it – twenty years from now, they’ll be marching off into other things and that’s still the legacy you leave.”

Bill Ayers

“I was a child of privilege and I woke up to a world on fire.”

Bill Ayers

“When someone who’s always been in your life is gone, it’s a stunning adjustment of your own identity.”

Bill Ayers

“To me, activism requires you to try very hard to open your eyes to the world as it is. See as much as you can, knowing that whatever you see is going to be partial. That you possess a partial consciousness in an infinite and expanding universe.”

Bill Ayers

“The passions and commitments that ignited my activity as a student are the same passions and commitments that I have today.”

Bill Ayers

“The only people who have never had a problem with me speaking in their venues are independent bookstores and libraries. Universities and humanities councils have canceled me, but never an independent bookstore.”

Bill Ayers

“One of the things that’s complicated about writing anything is that it’s an act of narcissism, and then of course once it sails out into the world, you have to let go of it.”

Bill Ayers

“Being an activist and an artist – those two things should go together. You should allow the artistic sensibility to control some of your activism, but never should it be allowed to paralyze you.”

Bill Ayers