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A Space for All

Voices of Diversity

The Easton Public Library, in collaboration with the Easton Diversity & Inclusion Task Force (EDIT), is proud to present Voices of Diversity, a lawn sign exhibit celebrating select inspirational quotations of diverse voices from around the world. All quotations have been submitted by members of the Easton Community


"The library is an arena of possibility, opening both a window into the soul and a door onto the world."

- Rita Dove, Former U.S. Poet Laureate

Photo © by Fred Viebahn. Copied, with permission, from Rita Dove's homepage at


"It is time for parents to teach young people early on that in diversity there is beauty and there is strength."

- Maya Angelou (1928-2014)

American poet, memoirist, and civil rights activist.


"Inclusivity means not 'just we're allowed to be there,' but we are valued. I've always said: smart teams will do amazing things, but truly diverse teams will do impossible things."

- Claudia Brind-Woody (1955-)

Vice President & Managing Director for Global Intellectual Property Licensing and Global Co-Chair for the LBGT Executive Taskforce at IBM.


"For there is always light,

if only we're brave enough to see it

If only we're brave enough to be it."

- Amanda Gorman(1998-)

A graduate of Harvard University, Amanda Gorman is the youngest inaugural poet in U. S. history, and an award-winning writer.


"We realize the importance of our voices only when we are silenced."

“There is only one way to look at things, until someone shows us how to look at them with different eyes.”

- Malala Yousafzai(1997-)

The youngest Nobel Prize laureate, Malala Yousafzai is a human rights advocate and activist, known for championing the education of women and children, especially in her native Pakistan.


"We should indeed keep calm in the face of difference and lvie our lives in a state of inclusion and wonder at the diversity of humanity."

- George Takei(1937-)

Actor, social justice activist and New York Times bestselling author, George Takei is also an outspoken member of the Human Rights Campaign, the largest national lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender political organization.


"Preservation of one's own culture does not require contempt or disrespect for other cultures."

- Cesar Chavez(1963-)

A recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Cesar Chavez co-founded the National Farm Workers Association (later the United Farm Workers of America) and dedicated his life to improving the working and living conditions of farm workers in the United States.


"A lie doesn't become truth, wrong doesn't become right, and evil doesn't become good, just because it's accepted by a majority."

- Booker T. Washington(1856-1915)

Founder of what is now Tuskegee University, Booker T. Washington was an American orator, educator, author, and an adviser to a number of United States presidents.


"Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much."

- Helen Keller(1880-1968)

American educator and advocate for the blind and deaf, as well as co-founder of the ACLU. Easton resident.


"You cannot let all the world's tragedies into your heart. You'll drown. But the ones you do let in should count. Let them manifest action."

- Lin-Manuel Miranda(1980-)

The creator of Broadway's Hamilton and In the Heights, Lin-Manuel Miranda is a Pulitzer Prize, Emmy, Grammy, and Tony award-winning composer, lyricist, and actor.


"This is my charge to everyone: We have to be better, we have to love more and hate less. Listen more and talk less. It is our responsibility to make this world a better place."

- Megan Rapinoe(1985-)

Highly regarded professional soccer player and advocate for many LGBTQ+ organizations.


"Diversity is about all of us, and about us having to figure out how to walk through this world together."

- Jacqueline Woodson(1963-)

The Poetry Foundation's Young People's Poet Laureate from 2015-2017, Jacqueline Woodson is an award-winning author of books for children and young adults, and was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship in 2020.


"The day the power of love overrules the love of power, the world will know peace."

"No culture can live if it attempts to be exclusive."

- Mahatma Gandhi(1869-1948)

Internationally know for his non-violent social activism, Mahatma Gandhi was an Indian lawyer, politician, and writer, and the leader of the nationalist movement against the British rule of India.


"If you can't fly, then run;

If you can't run, then walk;

If you can't walk, then crawl;

but by all means keep moving."

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere."

- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.(1929-1968)

Advancing civil rights through non-violence and civil disobedience, Martin Luther King, Jr was the most visible spokesperson of the Civil Rights Movement from 1955 until his assassination in 1968. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964.


"It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept, and celebrate those differences."

- Audre Lorde(1934-1992)

A self-described "black, lesbian, mother, warrior, poet," Audre Lord was an American writer, feminist, womanist, librarian, and civil rights activist.


"The most fulfilled people are the ones who get up every morning and stand for something larger than themselves."

- Wilma Mankiller(1945-2010)

The first woman elected to serve as Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation, Wilma Mankiller was a social worker, community developer, and American Cherokee activist.


"O, let my land be a land where Liberty

Is crowned with no false patriotic wreath,

But opportunity is real, and life is free,

Equality is in the air we breathe."

- Langston Hughes(1902-1967)

Playwright, novelist, essayist, and most notably, poet, Langston Hughes was a central figure of the Harlem Renaissance.


"Justice is what love looks like in public."

- Cornel West(1953-)

Prominent intellectual and author, Cornel West is Professor of the Practice of Public Philosophy at Harvard University and holds the title of Professor Emeritus at Princeton University.


"The most valuable possession you can own is an open heart; the most powerful weapon you can be is an instrument of peace."

- Carlos Santana(1947-)

Mexican-American award-winning guitarist and leader of the band Santana, know for its blend of Latin-infused rock, jazz, blues, salsa, and African rhythms.


"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has."

- Margaret Mead(1901-1978)

American anthropologist who developed the field of culture and personality and the related field of national character research.


"We need diversity of thought in the world to face the new challenges."

- Tim Berners-Lee(1955-)

English Computer Scientist, Professorial Fellow of Computer Science at the University of Oxford and a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Best known as the inventor of the World Wide Web.


"You see, art brings us together as a family because it is an individual expression of universal human experience. It comes from that part of us that is without feat, prejudice, malice, or any of the other things we create in order to separate ourselves one from the other."

- Jessye Norman(1945-2019)

Highly regarded American operatic soprano and recitalist.


"There will not be a magic day when we wake up and it's now okay to express ourselves publicly. We make that day by doing things publicly until it's simply the way things are."

- Tammy Baldwin(1962-)

First openly gay U. S. Senator.


"You never completely have your rights, one person, until you all have your rights."

- Marsha P. Johnson(1945-1992)

African-American transgender woman, drag queen and LBTQ activist, memorably present at the Stonewall Riots.


"My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together."

- Desmond Tutu(1931-)

South African Anglican cleric. He received the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1984 for his role in opposing South African apartheid.


"Diversity of thought and culture and religion and ideas are the strength of America."

- Gary Faye Locke(1950-)

American politician who served as 10th United States Ambassador to China, 21st governor of Washington, U. S. Secretary of Commerce in the Obama administration, and the first East Asian American governor in U. S. history.


"The best kind of leadership isn't about telling people what to do, it's about helping people see who we can be--as individuals and as a community."

- Michelle Obama(1964-)

The first African-American First Lady of the United States. A lawyer, writer, and the wife of the 44th President, Barack Obama.


"Perhaps the turning point in one's life is realizing that to be treated like a victim is not necessarily to become one."

- James Baldwin(1924-1987)

American novelist, essayist, poet, playwright, and activist. He was a leading voice on the subject of race in America in the 50s and 60s.


"Giving women education, work, the ability to control their own income, inherit and own property, benefits a society. If a woman is empowered, her children and her family will be better off. If families prosper, the village prospers, and eventually so does the whole country."

- Isabel Allende(1942-)

Chilean author and women's advocate.


"A central tenet to success is to show up--again and again and again--to take an alternate approach, and keep at it until it works. And when we show up, act boldly and practice the best ways to be wrong, we fail forward. No matter where we end up, we've grown from where we begin."

"We are strongest when we see the most vulnerable in our society, bear witness to their struggles, and then work to create systems to make it better."

- Stacey Abrams(1973-)

American politician, lawyer, voting rights activist, and author who served in the Georgia House of Representatives from 2007 to 2017, serving as minority leader from 2011 to 2017.


"Fear difference, you learn nothing."

- Hanna Gadsby(1978-)

Australian comedian, writer, actress, and television presenter.


"We have not always been forced to pass, to go underground, in order to work and live. We have a right to live openly and proudly...when our lives are suppressed, everyone is denied an understanding of the rich diversity of sex and gender expression and experience that exist in human society."

- Leslie Feinberg(1949-2014)

Transgender activist and author.


"We need to give each other the space to grow, to be ourselves, to exercise our diversity. We need to give each other space so that we may both give and receive such beautiful things as ideas, openness, dignity, joy, healing, and inclusion."

- Max De Pree(1924-2017)

American businessman and writer, who fostered the idea of an inclusive corporation in which all voices are heard.


"In the end, we will conserve only what we love; we will love only what we understand, and we will understand only what we are taught."

- Baba Dioum(1937-)

American businessman and writer, who fostered the idea of an inclusive corporation in which all voices are heard.


“In recognizing the humanity of our fellow beings, we pay ourselves the highest tribute.”

- Thurgood Marshal(1908-1993)

 an American lawyer and civil rights activist who served as Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States from October 1967 until October 1991. Marshall was the first African-American Supreme Court Justice in the history of the United States.


“Diversity is being invited to the party. Inclusion is being asked to dance.”

- Verna Myers(1960-)

 a nationally recognized expert on diversity and inclusion within law firms, law departments and law schools. Myers is a dynamic speaker and creative advisor in support of creating inclusive environments and improving the recruitment, retention and advancement of underrepresented groups.


“Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on Earth.”

- Muhammad Ali(1942-2016)

 an American professional boxer, activist, entertainer, poet, and philanthropist. Nicknamed The Greatest, he is widely regarded as one of the most significant and celebrated figures of the 20th century, and is frequently ranked as the best heavyweight boxer of all time.


“Diversity doesn't look like anyone. It looks like everyone.”

- Karen Draper

 a writer, poet and former inclusion advocate who turned her passion for celebrating diversity into her first book.


“We are all different. There is no such thing as a standard or run-of-the-mill human being, but we all share the same human spirit.”

- Stephen Hawking(1942-2018)

 English theoretical physicist, cosmologist, and author who was director of research at the Centre for Theoretical Cosmology at the University of Cambridge.


“We are less when we don't include everyone.”

- Stuart Milk(1960-)

American LGBT human rights activist and political speaker. The nephew of civil rights leader Harvey Milk, he is the co-founder of the Harvey Milk Foundation.


“For only love can conquer hate.”

- Marvin Gaye(1939-1984)

American singer and songwriter who helped to shape the sound of Motown in the 1960s.


“Inclusion works to the advantage of everyone. We all have things to learn, and we all have something to teach.”

- Helen Henderson(1946-2015)

Canadian disability rights activist and journalist.

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