Clinton School graduate Ivanley Noisette (’11), who was named a 2012 George J. Mitchell Scholar by the U.S.-Ireland Alliance, writes regular columns for the Huffington Post.
Noisette recently posted a piece on the 150th anniversary of President Abraham Lincoln’s issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation. In it, Noisette notes that Lincoln understood that slavery deprived a person of the “fruits of his or her own labor.”
Noisette points to writers, activists, musicians and others who articulated the labor injustice facing African Americans in the United States. He points particularly to author W.E.B. Dubois, who penned the classic book “The Souls of Black Folk.”
Lincoln’s recognition that depriving an individual of the fruits of his labor was a grave injustice strikes at the heart of the concept of human dignity. The suffering endured by the “souls of Black folk” behind the figurative veil that Du Bois so eloquently captured in his classic work over a century ago, was a testament not only to the resilience of suffering people, but also to the importance of striving toward a well-harmonized, citizen-based notion of human dignity that applies to all people living in America.