"When people talk of the freedom of writing, speaking, or thinking,
I cannot choose but laugh. No such thing ever existed. No such thing
now exists; but I hope it will exist. But it must be hundreds of years
after you and I shall write and speak no more."
by:
John Adams
(1735-1826) Founding Father, 2nd US President
Source:
letter to Thomas Jefferson, 15 July 1817, Ref: The Yale Book of Quotations, 2006
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Reader comments about this quote:
 -- Anonymous      
VERY insightful. Freedom is an ideal we are still endeavoring to reach.
 -- E Archer, NYC     
  •  
    The first freedom of speech is the freedom from speech, in other words, you don't have to say anything.
     -- Joe, Rochester, MI     
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    Very pessimistic, and yet... it does seem that he speaks of a goal that we have yet to reach today...
     -- Anonymous, Reston, VA US     
  •  
    It sounds like what a free man could say today, contemprary to the prejudicial universities' book burnings.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
  • 1
  •  
    Define freedom of expression. Does it mean the freedom to express anything at all? I hope not.
     -- David L. Rosenthal, Hollywood     
  •  
     -- Fried Doo, Nashville      
     
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