More than a decade ago, while I was giving a talk on Vesey in Charleston, a member of the audience challenged my view that what Vesey wished to accomplish — the freedom for his friends and family — could be a good thing, on the grounds that he went about it the wrong way. "Why not work within the system for liberation," the man asked, or even "stage a protest march?"
A bizarre similarity to Andrew Napolitano statement (which was brilliantly taken down by Larry Wilmore of The Daily Show) of:
At the time that he was the president of the United States, slavery was dying a natural death all over the western world. Instead of allowing it to die or helping it to die, or even purchasing the slaves and then freeing them, which would have cost a lot less many than the Civil War cost, Lincoln set about on the most murderous war in American history.
Despite the complete factually inaccuracies of this last statement, I will never understand why people say these "Why not work within the system?" type statements about slavery.