Zitate von Harry Belafonte

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Harry Belafonte

Geburtstag: 1. März 1927

Harry Belafonte, eigentlich Harold George Bellanfanti, Jr., ist ein US-amerikanischer Sänger, Schauspieler und Entertainer. In der Öffentlichkeit wurde er außerdem durch sein politisches und soziales Engagement und seine Tätigkeit als UNICEF-Botschafter des guten Willens bekannt.

Zitate Harry Belafonte

„To reach someone's soul, you have to have a social relationship. … You can't just sit down in the cold world of legal jargon and settle the nuances of racism and what it does to the social and cultural fabric.“

—  Harry Belafonte

On inspiring Robert F. Kennedy to greater concern for civil rights.
Interview in The Guardian (2007)
Kontext: To reach someone's soul, you have to have a social relationship. … You can't just sit down in the cold world of legal jargon and settle the nuances of racism and what it does to the social and cultural fabric. … The rich in America are so isolated that for Bobby to come into this intimate experience with its victims was a revelation. You could see in his face the anguish and consternation. It played away at his conscience and soul.

„I work for the United Nations. I go to places where enormous upheaval and pain and anguish exist.“

—  Harry Belafonte

Interview on Larry King Live (15 October 2002) http://edition.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0210/15/lkl.00.html
Kontext: I work for the United Nations. I go to places where enormous upheaval and pain and anguish exist. And a lot of it exists based upon American policy. Whom we support, whom we support as heads of state, what countries we've helped to overthrow, what leaders we've helped to diminish because they did not fit the mold we think they should fit, no matter how ill advised that thought may be.

„There's a place for him, but he's the final determinant as to whether he achieves that or not.“

—  Harry Belafonte

On Barack Obama
Interview in The Guardian (2007)
Kontext: There's a place for him, but he's the final determinant as to whether he achieves that or not. He needs to capture the imagination of a universe hungry for decent thought and passion. All he has to do is be truthful and have a vision for what to do and stop playing a goddamn game of politics. If he does that, he'll get everything he needs.

„On all levels of life and as each day unfolds, respect for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. grows impressively, and the essence of this respect is the fact that he had deeper insights than most of us have appreciated. It is not mere poetry to call him prophetic.“

—  Harry Belafonte

"Martin Luther King, Jr : A Personal Tribute" in Freedomways Vol. 12, No. 1 (1972); also in Freedomways Reader : Prophets in their own Country (2000) By Esther Cooper Jackson and Constance Pohl, p. 378
Kontext: On all levels of life and as each day unfolds, respect for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. grows impressively, and the essence of this respect is the fact that he had deeper insights than most of us have appreciated. It is not mere poetry to call him prophetic. The accuracy of his prophecies is almost uncanny.
By the early 1950's history had endowed him with a sense of the precise moment that Black people were ready for mass action, ready for its risks, and ready for its responsibilities.

„I must now get on with those things I always talked about doing but put off.“

—  Harry Belafonte

As quoted in Jet magazine (‪‪8 January 1990‬‬), p. 40
Kontext: When I was 40 and looking at 60, it seemed like a thousand miles away. But 62 feels like a week and a half away from 80. I must now get on with those things I always talked about doing but put off.

„The sham engineers of the music industry, who steer the wheels of public opinion, are driving the good features of calypso into the ground.“

—  Harry Belafonte

As quoted in New Musical Express ( May 1957), also in NME Rock 'N' Roll Years (1992) by John Tobler, p. 40
Kontext: The sham engineers of the music industry, who steer the wheels of public opinion, are driving the good features of calypso into the ground. I shudder to think what these greedy men will eventually do to this true art form.

„My social and political interests are part of my career. I cannot separate them.“

—  Harry Belafonte

"Pass The Torch: Harry Belafonte" at DVRepublic (2005) http://www.dvrepublic.com/view.php?stid=11
Kontext: My social and political interests are part of my career. I cannot separate them. My songs reflect the human condition. The role of art isn't just to show life as it is, but to show life as it should be.

„I don’t think that we are a species or a people that can exist without making mistakes somewhere along the line.“

—  Harry Belafonte

As quoted in Democracy Now! interview by Amy Goodman (30 January 2006)
Kontext: I don’t think that we are a species or a people that can exist without making mistakes somewhere along the line. Some make mistakes that are greater than others. But I do believe that we should have the courage and the ability to look at something that we did, even if in the first instance we believed it, when in the wake of the aftermath and the truth, you find out that that was not the case, to then say, 'Let me go back and examine what led me to this conclusion. What gods was I serving? What masters was I serving? What was it all about?' and then try to be more instructive to people who will listen to you.

„That is unacceptable. And that’s what I speak out against.“

—  Harry Belafonte

As quoted in Democracy Now! interview by Amy Goodman (30 January 2006) http://www.democracynow.org/article.pl?sid=06/01/30/157217&mode=thread&tid=25
Kontext: I think most important is that we have words that attempt to give us moral cleansing, so that somehow we hold those responsible for crashing into the Twin Towers and killing over 2,000 Americans citizens in cold blood, which is an act of terrorism — people who have done that should be sought out and brought to justice; there’s no question of that — but when we do what we have done, illegal war, going into the Middle East, bombing at will, and then hundreds of thousands of people get caught, who are either maimed or over 100,000 have already been killed, who are innocent men, women and children, and we chalk that off to a thing called "collateral damage," as if somehow that murderous thing that we’re doing so cruelly and so inhumanely has no judgment before world opinion, that we are somehow righteous and above criticism and above the law. That is unacceptable. And that’s what I speak out against.

„In the face of all the inhumanity, their humanity feeds the capacity to endure and continue to pursue honorable solutions to our pain.“

—  Harry Belafonte

Harry Belafonte and ‘The Long Road to Freedom’ YES! Magazine (2002) https://www.yesmagazine.org/issues/what-does-it-mean-to-be-an-american-now/harry-belafonte-and-the-long-road-to-freedom-20180828

„Each and every one of you has the power, the will and the capacity to make a difference in the world in which you live in. … You should go through life knowing, "I am somebody."“

—  Harry Belafonte

As quoted in "Belafonte tells children that they are somebody" in The Deseret News (18 January 2005) http://www.deseretnews.com/article/600105520/Belafonte-tells-children-that-they-are-somebody.html

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