"Men are qualified for civil liberty in exact proportion to their disposition to put moral chains upon their own appetites."
Edmund Burke
(1729-1797) Irish-born British statesman, parliamentary orator, and political thinker
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Many may disagree. but I think we are all equally qualified for liberty, created equal in the sight of God. Whether we deserve liberty is another question.
 -- Howard, Bangkok     
    There is a distinct difference between having the inalienable right to liberty and exercising that right / liberty. When an individual's act (unique to the person or in concert with others) is contrary to the right and natural law which defines liberty, said act is immoral in the exact proportion to the disposition of such act.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    Individual Freedom coupled with Personal Responsibility under a moral system of justice is about all we need.
     -- J Carlton, Calgary     
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    The more the moral chains are placed upon oneself the more armor of God is put on and in corrosponding relation the closer one walks with Him
     -- Anon     
    The age-old struggle for Freedom is bounded by the amount of respect we have for one another and of course our willingness to take responsibility. With the aid of teachers, priests, kings, lawyers, doctors, and civil servants strive to ever serve as the 'agent' for the body, mind and soul of every person, to place themselves between the individual and his needs/desires. He has been taught that he needs these other 'authorities' to live properly. As a result, man has become ever more in servitude to these endless levels of bureaucracy, to an army of drones, to the clutches of lawyers and doctors, and to appeal only to his priest in hopes that God will 'save' him. Man must be free or in chains -- it is up to him, it is up to every generation, and the struggle is on-going for with each new liberty comes a responsibility. In other words, we are only as free as we are willing to take responsibility for ourselves.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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    Boy, are we way out of balance now.
     -- cal, lewisville, tx     
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    Well said Archer.
     -- Anon     
    Interesting ratio: The higher the moral chains men put on their appetites : the lower their appetites for immorality : the higher their qualification for liberty. The questions rests on the agent of the passive voice. When we say "Men are qualified...", the agent of the passive voice (who qualifies men?) is important. If Government is to decide about the qualification for freedom, men will never grow out of their mistakes of immorality and even those who are moral and deserve freedom will be deprived of it. (Three stars only because the quote misses the agent of the passive voice).
     -- Elisabeth, Astoria, NY     
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    Morality has nothing to do with God as shown by our sordid past - today's latest news from the Vatican is no exception.
     -- RBESRQ     
    Morality is a decision/concept by the larger body of man about what does and does not hurt others. Our various religious books expound on these very same ideas. Yet many ignore the wisdom that has come before, over and over again. People may have certain inalianable rights, again decided by men, as long as they do not harm others, but when there are people in power who do not care about others, the definition of morality may change to fit the situation. It seems a sad but true trend; one that often has one morality for those in power and another for the masses. Please don't lose sight of the fact that those in the Vatican are merely men and suffer all the imperfections of those outside the Vatican; not unlike we see in every government and organization in every corner of the globe.
     -- Bette, Newport     
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     -- Wayne, Naples      
    "Society cannot exist unless a controlling power upon will and appetite be placed somewhere, and the less of it there is within, the more there is without. It is ordained in the eternal constitution of things that men of intemperate minds cannot be free. Their passions forge their fetters."

    Imprimis, Vol. 20, #9
     -- Anonymous, Gravesend     
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