"When we lose
the right to be different,
we lose
the privilege to be free."
by:
Justice Charles Evans Hughes
(1862-1948) Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court
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Freedom is an inalienable right, not a privilege. Other than that, the sentiment is absolutely correct.
 -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    The right to be different is also an inalienable right and just like the right to be free we can't give up these rights because they 'are' inalienable, meaning they permanently belong and cannot be taken away nor given up. If anything, these rights can only be waived by an individual or constrained by another but again, cannot be given up.
     -- Anon     
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    Mike, you always talk of inalienable rights and natural law of which none have anything to do with reality. Rights, in reality, are most definitely bestowed upon the people by their rulers - we had more rights before rights were forged in stone. When people became societal we lost our rights. P.s. nothing is permanent not even your rights or your freedom everything changes - at least Einstein agreed on that point.
     -- RBESRQ     
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    Intelligence is the ability to adapt to change. Stephen Hawking
     -- RBESRQ     
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    bless u for nowaday stressing the "individual" freedom. People mostly think of freedom as a national thing, which is an illusion & beside the point. politicians dont mention freedom of the individual because they dont want us to have any. they confuse us with flags and national freedom mantras. the ROW views this differently. In the US, polis appear on tv in front of 3-8 flags & a lapel flag. In europe there are usually no flags or sometimes one. Europeans learned the hard way that national patriotism or nationalism is a sticky wicket, leads to wars & restrictions.
     -- monaco man, monte carlo     
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    Monaco man their is a slight difference to American patriotism than European. I think it is because of the relative sizes of our political entities. Your nations are more like our states and our nation is more like your European Union. I agree however that politicians in the USA are damend if they do or damend if they don't wear the lapel pin. If they wear it for a few days or weeks and stop wearing it people think they have become communist. I remember growing up when city and town policemen only wore the insignia of their town or city. Now they also wear a US Fag as if they are part of a Federal Government police force. I believe that we all are loyal Americans whether or not we fly the flag or not, but oh! how I love to fly it and see it!
     -- Waffler, Smith     
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    People who think like RBESRQ are indeed very dangerous to us all. He would have us believe that the Soviets really did have the right to fill the gulags with refusniks. Government hands out the right to think and speak freely after all. He would have us believe that the Soviets were well within their rights to institutionalize the "insane" who happened to disagree with the government. It seems that since the government hands out our rights, it was perfectly acceptable for the Soviets to shoot the dissenters. That is the dream for Statists like RBE and Waffler. It happens to be a nightmare for the sane.
     -- Ken, Allyn, WA     
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    Ken, you and your kind will bring America to its knees and then rescued by Liberals - you are all the same. Sad, really sad...
     -- RBESRQ     
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    If we are asleep at the wheel, (and folks, we have been dozing for nearly a hundred years; for several generations,) and others remove our rights during our sleep because no one is on watch, then freedom as a right is forcibly, subversly, or subliminally removed and demoted to a privilege by those wielding the power of office and control of media. Unless the sleeping giant stands up and confronts those who were meddling during the long nap, there will be no one to defend the inalienable rights. Listen to Griffen's interview with Dodd, 1982. It is an example of how long this country has been snoozing.
     -- aa, hb     
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    "The privilege to be free" does not sound right. We are free, and I suppose it requires others to respect that. To respect anothers' freedom is not a privilege I extend, but a right I observe and respect. To do 'right' contributes to the commonwealth. Is it a duty or an obligation? I don't think of it like that. As you sow, so shall you reap.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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    True freedom comes from unity not difference - the recognition and acceptance of the commonalities that bind us together as human regardless of our apparent superficial differences.
     -- Mick, Manchester     
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    Ultimately, Freedom resides in what ought to be the Virtue founded, universal and solemn acknowledgement of the singularity and dignity of the individuality of each individual.

    The corraling of human beings into collectives ineluctably eventuates in their being rendered cattle/chattel.
     -- Patrick Henry, Red Hill     
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     -- Mary - MI      
    Mick, that is straight-up fascist double-speak. Freedom is not through the "acceptance" of what "binds us." The symbol of fascism are sticks bound together -- it is not freedom. Why is it that the left do not recognize that fascism IS the very form of socialism they espouse? And why not 'recognize and accept' the atrocities committed under Stalin and Hitler were the product of socialists ideologies? The 'Antifa' is absolutely 'Profa' and just like their early soviet comrades do nothing but try to tear down, thinking that someone will take care of them when the dust settles -- they'll be the first to starve or join the army and goose-step with the rest of them.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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    Conveniently Mr A you ignore the reference to humanity in my post. It is only through the acceptance of sameness - SAMA - that we guarantee each individual's freedom. That includes freedom from. Freedom from fear and persecution because of superficial differences - skin colour, race, sexuality, religious belief. Emphasising difference breeds fear, suspicion, hate and violence. Sticks bound together are still individual sticks but are made strong by their unity leading to acceptance, respect and even love.
     -- Mick, Manchester     
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    Mick, your aim is to regulate people into behaving the way you believe is best for humanity -- you believe your intentions are good. You propose censoring yourself and others from pointing out the differences between people in order to prevent fear, suspicion, hate and violence. You equate equality with being equally bound together which makes many strong as a group but unable to move individually. Men are to be used for a purpose, guided by a leader who is not bound, who will determine for the group what is best. That is fascism. And the good of humanity has always been its excuse.

    You are trying to make us all the same, to ignore the differences between us, to condemn genius, innovation, self-discovery. You are answering the question 'why am I here?' for me. That is simply a religion, with the 'law' as the Bible, the government as clergy, and the ruler as God. Have we yet found out how to elect angels to rule over us? This has been done over and over for eons -- it does not work, except for the ruling class, of which you are not, and somehow your plans still do not get you there. So you demand a better condition of your servitude and insist none have any more power than you have been delegated. That is socialism. And it will never deliver, because it is a killer, it sucks life away to the powerful, and we become mere beasts of burden. Screw that nonsense! It is the philosophy of servitude.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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