On the forum, we watched a social guidance film Understanding Your Ideals (1950) that reminded me of this little article I had just read in Chatterbox 1883, (first mentioned here).
What Is A Minority? was written by John Bartholomew Gough, a temperance activist.This man had a wild life, going from one extreme of the spectrum to the other; earlier in his life he was a drunkard to the point that his wife and child died of neglect, but later he became a great temperance reformer and orator who was well respected in his time. He originally spoke solely on temperance, but later spoke on many other things. Today we highlight this little article.
What Is A Minority
What is a minority? The chosen heroes of this earth have been in a minority. There is not a social, political, or religious privilege that you enjoy to-day that was not bought for you by the blood and tears and patient sufferings of the minority.
It is the minority that have vindicated humanity in every struggle. It is a minority that have stood in the van of every moral conflict, and achieved all that is noble in the history of the world. You will find that each generation has been always busy in gathering up the scattered ashes of the martyred heroes of a nation’s history. Look at Scotland, where they are erecting monuments — to whom? — to the covenanters. Ah! They were in a minority. Read their history, if you can, without blood tingling to the tips of your fingers. These were the minority, that, through blood, and tears, and bootings, and scourgings — dyeing the waters with their blood, and staining the heather with their gore — fought the glorious battle of religious freedom. Minority! if a man stand up for the right, though the right be on the scaffold, while the wrong sits in the seat of government; if he stand for the right, though he eat with the right and truth, and wretched crust, if he walk with obloquy and scorn in the bylanes and streets, while the falsehood and wrong ruffle it in silken attire, let him remember that whatever the right and truth are, there are always
“Troops of beautiful, tall angels”
gathered around him, and God himself stands within the dim future, and keeps watch over his own! If a man stands for the right and the truth, though every man’s finger be pointed at him, though every woman’s lip be curled at him in scorn, he stands in a majority; for God and good angels are with him, and greater are they that are for him than all they that be against him. – J. B. Gough