Skip to Content

100 Empowering Ruby Bridges Quotes For All Generations

100 Empowering Ruby Bridges Quotes For All Generations

Dive in and explore some of the best Ruby Bridges quotes that are so simple, yet so significant! Enjoy!

Best Ruby Bridges Quotes

1. “We may not all be equally guilty. But we are all equally responsible for building a decent and just society.” ― Ruby Bridges

We may not all be equally guilty.

2. “I believe that we have to come together, and we have to rely on the goodness of each other.” ― Ruby Bridges

3. “I wanted to use my experience to teach kids that racism has no place in hearts and minds.” ― Ruby Bridges

4. “My mother had taught me that the only thing you could depend on was your faith, and I had that.”  ― Ruby Bridges

5. “We all have a common enemy, and it is evil.” ― Ruby Bridges

We all have a common enemy, and it is evil

6. “If my mama said not to do something, I didn’t do it.” ― Ruby Bridges

7. “I think that racism is ugly and so unfair, and I believe that we all need one another.” ― Ruby Bridges

8. “It’s time to get past our racial differences. We owe it to our children to help them keep their clean start.” ― Ruby Bridges

9. “Our babies know nothing about hate or racism. But soon they begin to learn – and only from us.” ― Ruby Bridges

10. “We must absolutely take care of one another.” ― Ruby Bridges

We must absolutely take care of one another

Inspirational Ruby Bridges Quotes

1. “Evil isn’t prejudiced. It doesn’t care what you look like; it just wants a place to rest. It’s up to you whether you give it that place.” ― Ruby Bridges

Evil isn't prejudiced. It doesn't care what you look like

2. “Kids really don’t care about what their friends look like.” ― Ruby Bridges

3. “We as African Americans knew that if we wanted to see change, we had to step up to the plate and make that change ourselves. Not everyone comes to that realization in their lives, but thank God Linda Brown’s father felt that way.” ― Ruby Bridges

4. “Throughout my life, my prayers have actively sustained me – held me up, carried me through.” ― Ruby Bridges

5. “Somehow, it always worked. Kneeling at the side of my bed and talking to the Lord made everything okay.” ― Ruby Bridges

Kneeling at the side of my bed and talking to the Lord made everything okay

6. “It’s not who you’re going to sit beside at school that matters now: it’s what resources will your school have.” ― Ruby Bridges

7. “I remember the first time seeing myself on TV, when my family was watching the documentary ‘Eyes on the Prize’ for the first time. There were pictures of people going up the school stairs, and Mom said, ‘Oh, that’s you!’ I said, ‘I can’t believe this. This is important.’” ― Ruby Bridges

See also: List Of Top 100 Self-Reflection Quotes To Help You Thrive

8. “What I do remember about first grade and that year was that it was very lonely. I didn’t have any friends, and I wasn’t allowed to go to the cafeteria or play on the playground. What bothered me most was the loneliness in school every day.” ― Ruby Bridges

9. “I remember what it was like at age 6, not really understanding what was going on around me, but having all these grown-up thoughts running through my head about what I was facing, why this was happening.” ― Ruby Bridges

10. “I believe in my prayers.” ― Ruby Bridges

I believe in my prayers.

11. “What we, as African Americans, stood on was our faith.” ― Ruby Bridges

12. “A lot of my strength came from my upbringing.” ― Ruby Bridges

13. “All of our schools should be good enough to attract a healthy racial mix, which, I believe, leads to the most effective learning for everybody.” ― Ruby Bridges

14. “I want to inspire kids.” ― Ruby Bridges

15. “Now that I’m a parent, I know that my parents were incredibly brave.” ― Ruby Bridges

Now that I'm a parent, I know that my parents were incredibly brave

16. “When the scary subject of race is finally broached, kids want to talk and talk. It’s very satisfying.” ― Ruby Bridges

17. “I like to share my story with children, and they are amazed by the story.” ― Ruby Bridges

18. “I felt like there was something I needed to do – speaking to kids and sharing my story with them and helping them understand racism has no place in the minds and hearts of children.”

See also: Complete List Of 150 Inspiring Quotes About Compassion

19. “My family – my mother and father had gone through such a hard time that by the time I graduated from sixth grade, they were separated.” ― Ruby Bridges

20. “If we’re gonna get past our racial differences, it’s gonna come from our kids, but they have to be together to do that.” ― Ruby Bridges

If we're gonna get past our racial differences, it's gonna come from our kids

Powerful And Empowering Ruby Bridges Quotes

1. “I believe it doesn’t do yourself any good to hate.” ― Ruby Bridges

I believe it doesn't do yourself any good to hate.

2. “When I think about our babies today and them not being safe in school, I think that should be the next civil rights movement, you know, is to ban the assault weapons so that our babies can be safe.” ― Ruby Bridges

3. “The greatest lesson I learned that year in Mrs. Henry’s class was the lesson Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., tried to teach us all: Never judge people by the color of their skin. God makes each of us unique in ways that go much deeper.” ― Ruby Bridges

See also: 70 Wrongly Judged Quotes To Make You Stop Being Critical

4. “None of our kids come into the world knowing anything about disliking one another.” ― Ruby Bridges

5. “If we are about what is good today, then we that are good need to come together to fight what’s bad out there.” ― Ruby Bridges

If we are about what is good today, then we that are good need to come together

6. “If kids have the opportunity to come together to get to know one another, they can judge for themselves who they want their friends to be. All children should have that choice. We, as adults, shouldn’t make those choices for children. That’s how racism starts.” ― Ruby Bridges

7. “Wisdom is a gift but has nothing to do with age. That was probably the case with me.” ― Ruby Bridges

8. “The people I passed every morning as I walked up the school’s steps were full of hate. They were white, but so was my teacher, who couldn’t have been more different from them. She was one of the most loving people I had ever known.” ― Ruby Bridges

9. “I do think that some people are born as old souls.” ― Ruby Bridges

10. “You cannot look at a person and judge him or her by the color of their skin.” ― Ruby Bridges

You cannot look at a person and judge him or her by the color of their skin.

11. “It’s taken me a long time to own the early part of my life.” ― Ruby Bridges

12. “There are all kinds of monuments to adults – usually dead and usually white. But we don’t often lift up the extraordinary work of children.” ― Ruby Bridges

13. “I remember turning onto the street. I saw barricades and police officers and, just, people everywhere. When I saw all of that, I immediately thought that it was Mardi Gras. I had no idea that they were here to keep me out of the school.” ― Ruby Bridges

14. “We keep racism alive. We pass it on to our children. I think that is very sad.” ― Ruby Bridges

15. “Kids come into the world with clean hearts, fresh starts.” ― Ruby Bridges

Kids come into the world with clean hearts, fresh starts

16. “The mission of the Ruby Bridges Foundation is to create educational opportunities like science camp that allow children from different racial, cultural, and socio-economic backgrounds to build lasting relationships.” ― Ruby Bridges
17. “I never got the chance to meet Linda Brown; there were several times we were supposed to meet or be on the same stage together, but life gets in the way, and it never happened.” ― Ruby Bridges

18. “We’d get these boxes of clothing in the mail, and my mom would say, ‘What makes you think all this is for you? You’ve got a sister right behind you.’ So then I realized, we’re all in this together. We have to help each other.” ― Ruby Bridges

See also: 120 Meaningful Sister Quotes That’ll Make You Smile & Cry

19. “I think racism is something that is passed on and taught to our kids, and that’s a shame.”

20. “I was the first black child to desegregate the all-white William Frantz Elementary School in Louisiana in 1960.” ― Ruby Bridges

I was the first black child to desegregate the all-white William Frantz Elementary School

21. “Take one small step and make a big impact in the world.” ― Ruby Bridges

22. “What scares me is excluding and prejudging different people for who they are.” ― Ruby Bridges

23. “If you have a loving heart, it is impossible to be prejudiced against others.” ― Ruby Bridges

24. “We must always support each other in the struggle for equal rights in society.” ― Ruby Bridges

25. “Education is everyone’s right and no one should be denied it.” ― Ruby Bridges

Education is everyone’s right and no one should be denied it

26. “Our Ruby taught us all a lot.

She became someone who helped change our country.

She was part of history,

just like generals and presidents are part of history.

They’re leaders, and so was Ruby.

She led us away from hate, and she led us nearer to knowing each other,

the white folks and the black folks.” 

27. “Please, God, try to forgive those people.

Because even if they say those bad things, They don’t know what they’re doing.

So You could forgive them,

Just like You did those folks a long time ago

When they say terrible things about You.” ― Ruby Bridges

28.  “I guess the police couldn’t keep them behind the barricades. It seemed to take us a long time to get to the marshals’ car.” ― Ruby Bridges

29. “Later that year, two white boys joined Ruby at the Frantz.

Elementary School. Their parents were tired of seeing the boys get into mischief around the house when they could have been in school and learning. The mob became very angry when the first white boys went back to school. But those boys were soon joined by other children.

“We’ve been sitting back and letting our children get cheated out of an education because some people have tried to take the law into their own hands, ” one parent said. “It’s time for us to fight for the side of the law and for our children’s right to go to a school and get their education.” They all did get their education, Ruby and a growing number of boys and girls who went to school with her. By the time Ruby was in the second grade, the mobs had given up their struggle to scare Ruby and defeat the federal judge’s order that New Orleans schools be desegregated so that children of all races might be in the same classroom. Year after year, Ruby went to the Frantz School. She graduated from it, then went on to graduate from high school. Ruby Bridges is married to a building contractor and has four sons who attend school within the New Orleans Public School System. Now a successful businesswoman, she has created the Ruby Bridges Educational Foundation for the purpose of increasing parental involvement in schools.” ― Ruby Bridges

30. “Love is the most powerful weapon to make the world a better place.” ― Ruby Bridges

Love is the most powerful weapon to make the world a better place

Ruby Bridges Quotes From “Through My Eyes”

1. “My segregated school was fairly far from my house, but I had lots of company for the long walk. All the kids on my block went to Johnson Lockett.” ― Ruby Bridges

My segregated school was fairly far from my house, but I had lots of company

2. “Apparently the test was difficult, and I’ve been told that it was set up so that kids would have a hard time passing. If all the black children had failed, the white school board might have had a way to keep the schools segregated for a while longer.” ― Ruby Bridges

3. “I loved school that year, and my teacher, Mrs. King, was warm and encouraging. She was black, as all the teachers in black schools were back then. Mrs. King was quite old, and she reminded me of my grandmother.” ― Ruby Bridges

4. “My parents argued about what to do. My father, Abon, didn’t want any part of school integration. He was a gentle man and feared that angry segregationists might hurt his family. Having fought in the Korean War, he experienced segregation on the battlefield, where he risked his life for his country. He didn’t think that things would ever change. He didn’t think I would ever be treated as an equal.” ― Ruby Bridges

5. “When we left school that first day, the crowd outside was even bigger and louder than it had been in the morning. There were reporters and film cameras and people everywhere.” ― Ruby Bridges

When we left school that first day, the crowd outside was even bigger and louder

6. “In the late spring of my year at Johnson Lockett, the city school board began testing black kindergartners. They wanted to find out which children should be sent to the white schools.” ― Ruby Bridges

7. “I took the test. I was only five, and I’m sure I didn’t have any idea why I was taking it. Still, I remember that day. I remember getting dressed up and riding uptown on the bus with my mother, and sitting in an enormous room in the school board building along with about a hundred other black kids, all waiting to be tested.” ― Ruby Bridges

8. “All day long, white parents rushed into the office. They were upset. They were arguing and pointing at us. When they took their children to school that morning, the parents hadn’t been sure whether William Frantz would be integrated that day or not. After my mother and I arrived, they ran into classrooms and dragged their children out of the school. From behind the windows in the office, all I saw was confusion. I told myself that this must be the way it is in a big school.” ― Ruby Bridges

9. “What I didn’t know in kindergarten was that a federal court in New Orleans was about to force two white public schools to admit black students. The plan was to integrate? only the first grade for that year. Then, every year after that, the incoming first grade would also be integrated.” ― Ruby Bridges

10. “I guess the police couldn’t keep them behind the barricades. It seemed to take us a long time to get to the marshals’ car.” ― Ruby Bridges

I guess the police couldn't keep them behind the barricades.

11. “Later on I learned there had been protestors in front of the two integrated schools the whole day. They wanted to be sure white parents would boycott the school and not let their children attend. Groups of high school boys, joining the protestors, paraded up and down the street and sang new verses to old hymns. Their favorite was “Battle Hymn of the Republic,” in which they changed the chorus to “Glory, glory, segregation, the South will rise again.” Many of the boys carried signs and said awful things, but most of all I remember seeing a black doll in a coffin, which frightened me more than anything else.“ ― Ruby Bridges

12. “I remember climbing into the back seat of the marshals’ car with my mother, but I don’t remember feeling frightened. William Frantz Public School was only five blocks away, so one of the marshals in the front seat told my mother right away what we should do when we got there.” ― Ruby Bridges

13. “Let us get out of the car first,” the marshal said. “Then you’ll get out, and the four of us will surround you and your daughter. We’ll walk up to the door together. Just walk straight ahead, and don’t look back.” ― Ruby Bridges

14. “ We drove down North Galvez Street to the point where it crosses Alvar. I remember looking out of the car as we pulled up to the Frantz school. There were barricades and people shouting and policemen everywhere. I thought maybe it was Mardi Gras, the carnival that takes place in New Orleans every year. Mardi Gras was always noisy. ― Ruby Bridges

26 As we walked through the crowd, I didn’t see any faces. I guess that’s because I wasn’t very tall and I was surrounded by the marshals. People yelled and threw things. I could see the school building, and it looked bigger and nicer than my old school. When we climbed the high steps to the front door, there were policemen in uniforms at the top. The policemen at the door and the crowd behind us made me think this was an important place.” ― Ruby Bridges

15. “When we were near the school, my mother said, Ruby, I want you to behave yourself today and do what the marshals say.” ― Ruby Bridges

When we were near the school, my mother said, Ruby, I want you to behave yourself today

16. “The federal court, led by Federal District Court Judge J. Skelly Wright, unyielding in his commitment to upholding the law of the land and in his dedication to equal opportunity for all Americans, would block the segregationists again and again. J. Skelly Wright struck down the state’s new anti-integration laws as unconstitutional. School integration would proceed. Praise the Lord!” ― Ruby Bridges

17. “The judge couldn’t enforce his order in time for the start of school in September, but he set a new deadline forMonday, November 14.” ― Ruby Bridges

18. “The anger all across New Orleans convinced Judge Wright that things might grow violent.
He asked the U.S. government to rush federal marshals to New Orleans to protect the black first graders.” ― Ruby Bridges

19. “There were four of us in all. There was a fifth girl originally, but her parents decided at the last minute not to transfer her. Three of the remaining children, all girls, were to go to a school named McDonogh. I was the fourth child. I was going to integrate William Frantz Public School, and I was going alone. On Sunday, November 13, my mother told me I would start at a new school the next day. She hinted there could be something unusual about it, but she didn’t explain. “There might be a lot of people outside the school,” she said. “But you don’t need to be afraid. I’ll be with you.” All I remember thinking that night was that I wouldn’t be going to school with my friends anymore, and I wasn’t happy about that.”― Ruby Bridges

20. “It must be college, I thought to myself.” ― Ruby Bridges

It must be college, I thought to myself

Ruby Bridges Quotes To Think About

1. “You cannot look at a person and tell whether they’re good or bad.” ― Ruby Bridges

You cannot look at a person and tell whether they're good or bad

2. “Racism is a form of hate. We pass it on to our young people. When we do that, we are robbing children of their innocence.” ― Ruby Bridges

3. “We have tolerance, respect, and equality in our written laws but not in the hearts of some of our people.” ― Ruby Bridges

4. “I’m not a very public person.” ― Ruby Bridges

5. “I pray for my enemies, that God would forgive them.” ― Ruby Bridges

I pray for my enemies, that God would forgive them

6. “Evil looks like you and I. I know what evil looks like, and I know that it comes in all shades and colors.” ― Ruby Bridges

7. “Every day, I would show up, and there were no kids, just me and my teacher in my classroom. Every day, I would be escorted by marshals past a mob of people protesting and boycotting the school. This went on for a whole year.” ― Ruby Bridges

8. “If you really think about it, if we begin to teach history exactly the way that it happened – good, bad, ugly, no matter what – I believe that we’re going to find that we are closer, more connected than we are apart.” ― Ruby Bridges

9. “My mother and our pastor always said you have to pray for your enemies and people who do you wrong, and that’s what I did.” ― Ruby Bridges

10. “That’s really what my work is all about – bringing kids together.” ― Ruby Bridges

That's really what my work is all about - bringing kids together

11. “From age 7 to about 37, I had a normal life and not a very easy one.” ― Ruby Bridges

12. “Once my school was integrated, and I was there with white kids and a few black kids, it really didn’t matter to us what we looked like.” ― Ruby Bridges

13. “I’ve seen schools in Detroit where the windows are broken, where there’s no heat, and children are sitting with their coats on in class in the middle of a snowstorm. I’ve also seen schools in California with Olympic-sized swimming pools and cafeterias like five-star restaurants.” ― Ruby Bridges

14. “Administrations and administrative faculty work very hard to see that schools are diverse as much as possible.” ― Ruby Bridges

15. “We have to take care of each other’s children.” ― Ruby Bridges

We have to take care of each other's children

16. “I had never seen a white teacher before, but Mrs. Henry was the nicest teacher I ever had.”

17. “Schools should be diverse if we are to get past racial differences.” ― Ruby Bridges

18. “As African-Americans, people of that generation felt pretty much if they were going to see changes in the world, they had to make sacrifices and step up to the plate. I’m very proud that my parents happened to be people who did. They were not privileged to have a formal education.” ― Ruby Bridges

19. “Break down prejudices to see people’s true worth.” ― Ruby Bridges

See also: 130 Self Worth Quotes To Remind You Of Your Greatness

20. “Guide your life with hope instead of fear.” ― Ruby Bridges

Guide your life with hope instead of fear

Final Word

I hope that you have been captivated by Ruby Bridges quotes, and that you have found her simple wisdom as touching as I did.

This wonderful woman has written a few books, so make sure to check them out!

Read next: Top 130 Megan Thee Stallion Quotes To Empower You

100 Empowering Ruby Bridges Quotes For All Generations