"If America is destroyed, it may be by Americans who salute the flag,
sing the national anthem, march in patriotic parades, cheer Fourth of
July speakers – normally good Americans, but Americans who fail to
comprehend what is required to keep our country strong and free,
Americans who have been lulled away into a false security."
by:
Ezra Taft Benson
(1899-1994) President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
Source:
his book, An Enemy Hath Done This, 2002
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Reader comments about this quote:
Nice sentiment, but those who agree with it may differ widely in their ideas of "what is required to keep our country strong and free."
 -- E Archer, NYC     
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    I agree with his idealism of "false security". Those who give up their freedom, in return for government's empty promises of 'safety,' are the very American's who endanger our Republic. Corrupt governments rule by fear, intimidation, and manipulation -- they create a catastrophic boogie-man, real or illusionary, to which they are the sole protector. We have all heard the quote that those who give up their freedom for perceived security deserve neither and will lose both -- this is what I am sure Benson is saying: Americans who look to the government for all of their sustenance, security, livelihood, privilege, protection, life, and religion - while turning a blind eye to corruption so long as they get their dole - are more accountable for it's demise than are those "boogie-men" that stand waiting to destroy America from without. As it has been stated, America cannot be conquered from without, unless she is corrupt from within.
     -- Logan, Memphis, TN     
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    Right On Logan! You are the kind of American I want on my side when we are called to defend the Homeland. What is required to keep our country strong and free is an everlasting loyalty to OUR Constitution and the blood of the 21st Century American Patriot. Count me in boys. I may be too old to fight in Iraq but not too old to fight for Our Constitution! Patrick Henry said it best: "I regret that I have but one life to give for my country."
     -- 21st Century American Patriot , Your Town,USA.     
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    If only these patriots were there to fight for our country in 1994, 2000 and 2004, then we wouldn't have to suffer under King George today and watch as our constitution and country are raped and pillaged.
     -- Anonymous, Reston, VA US     
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    Hey Anonymous from Reston,VA. This Patriot was here in 1994, 2000 and 2004. I didn't vote for King George but that didn't make a difference, did it? Tell me,what do you propose?
     -- 21st Century American, Your Town,USA.     
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     -- Bob, Eugene, OR      
    It sounds like demogoguery, given the lack of detail.
     -- David L. Rosenthal     
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    Benson is partly right. America may well be destroyed and if so it will be through ignorance and being "lulled away,' but it will not be by the ones Benson is suggesting, but by the corporate controlled government and press who sell our young men to give their lives and our citizens to give their and their children's and grandchildren's labor to further fatten the fat-cats' immense wealth.
     -- Dick, Fort Worth     
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     -- Joe, Rochester, MI      
    Actually, what Benson means that if Americans turn thier backs on GOD and HIS commandments as given in Holy Scripture, then they will subject themselves to all the calamities of the last days fortold in the Bible. I have listened to ALL of Bensons talks and speaches given. The writers of the American Constitution spoke of one country "UNDER GOD"... and on American currency has printed "In GOD we Trust".. If Americans turn thier backs on God by supporting policies Against God's commands such as abortion, sex outside of marriage, not honoring the Sabbath Day etc.. then they justly loose the protection granted to them by God. For further reference on this truth refer to the Book Of Mormon, it is a book that Benson spent his whole life studying and teaching and testifying of... Benson was truely a patriotic American and I know of no man who has loved America more...Amen!
     -- Rebecca, Fergus, Ont     
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     -- Anonymous      
    Logan and 21st Century American I shall fight along side you both when we shall have too, here's some quotes I think will keep us patriots going. "Better to die on your feet that to live on your knees." -Monica L. "Victory or death" -George Washington "It is dangorous to be right when your country is wrong" "Freedom is now or never" "If you're going through hell, keep going" -Winston Churchill "Victory is always possible for the person who never stops fighting" -Napolean Hill. And Rebecca if you are a Christian which I am also I almost agree with you, but if America's still alive, why not fight for it? I am a Christian and a loyal patriot, for America, fight I shall.
     -- Crystal, a patriot, Pittsburgh, P.A.     
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    Ezra Taft Benson is just reiterating what Benjamin Franklin said before he did: "Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety." -- Benjamin Franklin
     -- Steven Montano, Mesa, AZ     
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    I want to do something to help my country but I don't know how to help. I see corruption in government, I read about how the rich get richer by sucking off of the middle class, (which is headed for extinction), and about how the elites control everything from media to both political parties. I see people who are too busy trying to earn a living to care about what is going on in government. I watch a nation who is ready to elect a man virtually unknown who cries, "Change!" but never says what kind of change he is talking about. How can we help? What can we DO? Many people would help if they knew what to do.
     -- Linda Hayes, Foley, AL     
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    Rebecca, RIGHT ON! Love the additional quotes from Crystal too. I am a Christian too and I will fight for America and the God-directed Constitution!
     -- Local Motion, St George     
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     -- Anonymous      
    Benson was a man whose heart rejoiced in liberty. He was so precise on this utterance that it makes me shiver.
     -- Ben, Orem, UT     
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     -- Justin, Elkland      
    America was destroyed (long live America !) by flag waving Americans, non-flag waving Kenyans, king Georges, the apathetic many, etc. Logan, Crystal, and others here, said well. I stand with all those here who love our government of law and justice, recognizing the inalienable rights of the sovereign individual and, is exemplified the the constitutionally defining representative republic. This quote deserves many, many more stars than 5.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    May is a big word. He just as easily could have said "it may not be destroyed by those people". This is a BS quote. D. Rosenthal got it right this is most likely or may be as Benson would safely say demogogery. What does he not stand up like a man and say flag wavers are or are not a danger. This is a McCarthy like slippery slope like saying Democrats are communists or Republicans are Nazis.
     -- Waffler, Smith     
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    Waffler, do you wave the flag? _____ My point exactly. All flag wavers are not communists in jack-ass apparel or Nazis with trunks and big ears, many are. Was it Russians, Chinese or some other flag that destroyed the original intent of the Constitution's Representative Republic? NO ! It was flag waving Americans. It will be flag waving Americans that restores law, inalienable rights, liberty, freedom, and justice to a Representative Republic. Waffler, you of course missed the entire point of the quote.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    Rebecca, I'm curious about those "last days" you mention. In 1948 when Israel became a state, our fundamentalist preacher assured us that Jesus would return any day now and that these were truly " the last days". I was 15 at the time and , you do the math, and it seems that the "last days" are taking their sweet time getting here. I don't put much stock in Bible "predictions" or those who interpret these predictions.
     -- jim k, Austin,Tx     
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    Waffler, you're an idiot.
     -- Howard, Bangkok     
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    Linda, you have been misled by the media. It is the government (not the 'rich')that is siphoning off your money and with it they bail out their friends...the climate folks, the health care folks, the environmentalists, the unions, the United Nations, the energy folks, etc., not the rich...as in 'worked for a living, built a business, hired a lot of workers to produce something' and then "got rich". They were productive and earning. Our very own government ruled, regulated, and taxed most businesses out of the country or out of business and is still doing so...but do you see those friends of the executive office getting poorer??? Nope, just you and I. Find a patriotic group to stand with, vote anyone out of office who does not adhere to his/her Oath of Office and therefore the US Constitution. This is our guarantee and we must reclaim it by voting out those who walk on it. You can start by doing small things, like sharing the Constitution, learning about it, VOTING, working at polls so you KNOW there is no funny business going on. Learn who the Secretary of State is and if they have an impeccably honest history...don't be silent for as a much more intelligent person than I said once, "silence is acquiescence."
     -- Abigail, Newport     
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    Fuck the flag waving Americans!!!! They are they're the ones who have made this country morally and financially bankrupt.
     -- Anonymous     
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    No Mike you and I agree but you are two lame to see it. Flag waving has nothing to do with either side, So I agree with you. Benson could have said that "people who eat food may be the destroyers of the nation". That is why it is a BS quote!
     -- Waffler, Smith     
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    Now let us march off like good illogical reactionaires and get those flag wavers and food eaters and string 'em up!
     -- Waffler, Smith     
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    For someone that was right of right this isn't a bad statement - the government obeys the elite class.
     -- RBESRQ     
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     -- JoW, Utah      
     
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