"Constitutions are made of paper;
Bayonets are made of steel."
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The source is ironic, but no less true.
 -- Joe, Rochester, MI     
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    So what, it's also been said that "the pen is mightier than the sword"...
     -- Anonymous, Reston, VA US     
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    Gracious...frankly I am not suprised that the French would notice this distinction--and it says a lot. A Constitution is as strong as the bayonets that defend it. Oh-I understand they have a new battle tank. 1 forward gear and 4 reverse gears. The forward gear is for those situations when they are attacked from the rear.
     -- MIchael , Houston, TX     
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    "A Constitution is as strong as the bayonets that defend it." (Michael from Houston) And that is why the immoral malefactor(s), and tyrant(s) must remove the Constitutional Militia's regulation.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    "...the Constitutional Militia's regulation." A reference to the 2nd Amendment?
     -- Joe, Rochester, MI     
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    Yes, Reston, it has been proved that to shove the full length of a pen into ones ear can be fatal.
     -- David L Rosenthal     
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    The phrase can be twisted to justify the responsibility of the People or the tyranny of the state. Either way, a powerful statement.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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    Freedom is a state of nature we are born with and unless it's defended by the individuals within a nation that enjoy its positive results with WORDS, its meaning will, as history proves, be changed by WORDS. If Americans have any chance left of turning things around without the bayonet, it will be with words and that chance will only exist as long as our written on paper Constitution still has some authority left in the fact that it is still there. Lose it and the bayonets are inevitable as the laws of nature etched into the heart and soul of man that cause him to desire freedom will not be ignored because they cannot be ignored. The desire to be free is as instinctual as the desire to eat and is just as essential to the survival of man. This is what nature dictates and to ignore it is fatal.
     -- Anon     
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    Strange...we don't really use either one much anymore.
     -- Ben, Orem, UT     
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    The bayonet is symbolic...the pen is useless. Semper Tyrannis.
     -- J Carlton, Calgary     
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    The pen may be useless but the pamphlets written by Thomas Payne were powerful in helping defeat the British in the Revolutionary War.
     -- jim k, austin     
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    There ought to be a law written with a pen that puts to death those who practice tyranny over the rights of Americans through our form of self government. That's right, we have one, it's called treason.
     -- Anon     
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    Forgot, five stars this time for the caliber of the conversation the quote stirred up.
     -- Anon     
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    Understanding from the French, now there is a surprise! And maybe not. The nation-states of Europe pursued a somewhat forced ethnic identity as a basis for government. It was called nationalism and it ruled that stage at least until WWI. Just below nationalism was the quest for power, as ever. Dear old Queen Victoria thought she could bring an end to all this nonsense by having a slew of kids and marrying them off to all the royal houses of Europe. It didn't work and she was a bit daft to say the least. We do find Europe engaged in a process of nationalism along with unity a century later. The Balkans, long called "the powder keg of Europe," have now become a multiplicity of ethnic states. The former USSR has likewise disintegrated along ethnic lines. At the same time, we find Europe becoming some sort of union with a common currency, freedom of travel, and a loss of internal tariffs. In some respects their borders are now more free than the ones between our own states here in the USA. Fancy that.
     -- J. B. Wulff, Bristol     
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    Virtuously conceived and constituted constitutions are made of, and sustained by, the convictions of rightly principled persons.

    Preserved, as required, by steel.
     -- Patrick Henry, Red Hill     
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    The pen is mightier than the sword... a lesson that is forever abused.
     -- Robert, Somewhere in the USA     
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