"To deny freedom of the will is to make morality impossible."
James Anthony Froude
(1818-1894) British author and historian
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Reader comments about this quote:
 -- Joe, Rochester, MI      
This is the crux of morality. Integrity and virtue cannot be legislated by governments or churches.
 -- E Archer, NYC     
    The impairment of freedom and liberty as evidenced by compelled compliance, license, victimless crimes, governmental larceny with impunity, etc. impairs and is contrary to lawful / eternal morality. In direct proportion, the greater the denial of freedom, the greater morality is made impossible! ! ! To add to Archer's excellent comment, morality can not be legislated, only law can be legislated.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
    Freedom is the spirit of morality. Freedom gives life to all virtue. There is no virtue without freedom.
     -- Ben, Orem, UT     
    To speak for and desire morality on a personal level these days is to be a religious zealot and to speak for and desire them again in practice by our administrations is to be a right wing nut aka extremist. Morals is a dirty word in modern society. You want to be good it's ok to be ethical but don't bring morals into it.
     -- Anon     
    Excellent comments all.
     -- J Carlton, Calgary     
     -- jim k, austin      
    It means that morality is only demonstrated when you choose it of your own free will. As to not being able to legislate morality - a law may not be able to make a person moral, but a law that is not written to define what is or is not moral in our society has no valid reason to exist.
     -- warren, olathe     
     -- Zachary, Washington, DC      
    Warren, laws are not written (or should not be) to create a moral society, but a just society. Laws right the wrong that is done to you and the punishment that goes with it stands as a lesson to prevent the wrong in the future. A moral society can only be created by the individuals in society deciding to act morally themselves. For instance, prohibition attempted to legislate morality, but people still bought liquor and drank it. If anything society became more immoral and crass.
     -- Ken, Allyn, WA     
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