"I forgive you," Nadine Collier said through tears to the accused killer of her mother, Ethel Lance. "You took something very precious away from me. I will never get to talk to her ever again. I will never be able to hold her again, but I forgive you, and have mercy on your soul" (Michael Daly, Daily Beast).
If racism is America's original sin, then the original irony of American history is the astonishing extent to which a people long deemed less than human have modeled humanity in an exemplary way for those of us who consider ourselves superior to this demeaned, dehumanized minority. What would American culture be without the humanizing gifts of African Americans offered so freely generation after generation to a mainstream culture unable to see, acknowledge, and find gratitude for those abundant gifts?
I shudder to think.