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Do we give lip service or real service to a cause? Henry David Thoreau, that rugged New England individualist of the nineteenth century, once went to jail rather than pay his poll tax to a state that supported slavery. Thoreau’s good friend Ralph Waldo Emerson hurried to visit him in jail. Peering through the bars, Emerson exclaimed, “Why, Henry, what are you doing in there?”

The uncowed Thoreau replied, “Nay, Ralph, the question is, ‘What are you doing out there?’”

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