You have seen photographs of the sun taken during a total eclipse. The corona fills the print. All of those photographs were taken through telescopes. The lenses of telescopes and cameras can no more cover the breadth and scale of the visual array than language can cover the breadth and simultaneity of internal experience. Lenses enlarge the sight, omit its context, and make of it a pretty and sensible picture, like something on a Christmas card. I assure you, if you send any shepherds a Christmas card on which is printed a three-by-three photograph of the angel of the Lord, the glory of the Lord, and a multitude of the heavenly host, they will not be sore afraid. More fearsome things can come in envelopes. More moving photographs than those of the sun’s corona can appear in magazines. But I pray you will never see anything more awful in the sky.
Still, Berkeley lingers in my mind, and I must exhaust all enrollment opportunities to be fully content with the application process. A final, more personal note as to why I so desire to attend Berkeley over a few of my other possibilities: in the middle of November, in the midst of completing the bulk of my college applications, my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. Combined with applying to college, completing homework, staying on top of classes, and keeping my commitments to extra-curricular activities, the knowledge that my mom has a serious form of cancer made those few months all the more stress-filled and difficult. Thank the Lord, my mom has successfully completed radiation and continues to see specialists regularly, solidifying her status in my mind as the strongest person I know. Going off to college, I am going to miss my mom dearly, and she will dearly miss me. I've always been very close with her, and I recognize the ambivalence within her of wanting me to stay close to home in the Bay Area while wanting what's best for me. I feel similar sentiments, having the strong urge to protect and care for my mom, visiting on a regular basis, while desiring to grow as a person into the man I strive to be. Berkeley would be the perfect choice of school in relation to both aspects: its proximity to my home town of Livermore, as well as the educational opportunities Berkeley offers.
You don't be afraid. I said it was intended that you should perish, in the ghetto, perish by never being allowed to go beyond and behind the white man's definition, by never being allowed to spell your proper name. You have, and many of us have, defeated this intention and by a terrible law, a terrible paradox, those innocents who believed that your imprisonment made them safe are losing their grasp of reality. But these men are your brothers, your lost younger brothers, and if the word "integration" means anything, this is what it means, that we with love shall force our brothers to see themselves as they are, to cease fleeing from reality and begin to change it, for this is your home, my friend. Do not be driven from it. Great men have done great things here and will again and we can make America what America must become.