"The whole principle is wrong.
It's like demanding that grown men live on skim milk
because the baby can't eat steak."
by:
Robert A. Heinlein
(1907-1988) American writer
Source:
on Censorship, in his book, The Man Who Sold The Moon, p186
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Reader comments about this quote:
Okay its a great an intriguing quote, but what's the context? I'm not sure to what he is referring.
 -- Jennifer Phillips, Kingston     
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    Apropos the Danish cartoon kerfuffle by people who want to 'constrain' actual free speech under the banner of 'preventing offensive speech'. We, of course, have our own versions of attempts at intimidation in pursuit of the same sort of homogenization of ideological notions that we condemn in others. For example: Ralph Reed's (plagiarist; Apr 14, 1983 - for which he was fired, first executive director of the Christian Coalition during the early 1990s and long-time pal of Jack Abramoff - In college Reed would sleep on Abramoff's couch) statement that "I want to be invisible. I do guerrilla warfare. I paint my face and travel at night. You don't know it's over until you're in a body bag." - Norfolk Virginian-Pilot, 11/9/91. How Christian of him to brag about his intimidation tactics in pursuit of ramming his notions down the throats of others - not entirely unlike, though still perhaps a bit less violent than, the Islamist thugs or Bill O'Reilly wanting to impose their silly restrictions on others. Given a chance he and his cronies would impose a plethora of restrictions on free speech - like this entry. Oh, I'm sorry; you weren't expecting skim milk were you? I imagine the skim milk is on its way.
     -- Terry Berg, Occidental, CA     
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     -- Anonymous, Reston, VA US      
    Like 'free speech zones' outside of a party convention hall or the daily propaganda from the mainstream media. Prohibitions of independence and personal responsibility are the first steps towards despotism.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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    great quote; sorta sets up a scenario to show why prohibition, compelled compliance, license, governmental larceny with impunity, victimless crimes, etc are all unlawful. I liked what Terry said, but in fairness, he left out an Atheist's Theocratic Collective with its prohibitions on free speech, by way of example: prayer in public.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    It has always amazed or bemused me how an 18 year old or 21 year old cannot buy alcohol or tobacco. But once "we" become of age and sophisticated we can do all of those things that we forbid our kids to do.. Hey! if smoking, drugs, and alcohol ain't good for kids it ain't good for you either. I guess maybe "adults" are sophisticated enough to be moderate. Teeheehee, hahaha!
     -- Waffler, Smith, Arkansas     
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    Naturally, if some liberal do-gooder thinks that something you eat, or wear, or drive ,or do anything else he disagrees with , he'll do his best to get a law passed and force you to comply. And since he thinks he's smarter than you, he's just doing this for your own good. Put down that burger and eat that tofu, and for goodness sake, try not to have any fun in this life.
     -- jim k, austin, tx     
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    Ah yes, Brother Heinlein. One of the three greatest influencers of my life for sure. Not bad for a pulp science fiction writer. Truly an everyman's Voltaire for the 20th and 21st Century. If you have not read him, you should.
     -- Eric, Wichita     
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    Jim I don't know what planet you come from but I don't believe that regualting some of these things is a liberal plank. Hell prohibition was passed in the '20's and signed by a Republican President, I assume it was a republican congress. It was repealed under the Democrat Roosevelt was it not? How do you exactly characterize the flower children drug culture of the '70's; as liberals or conservatives. I think "we" sometimes throw these labels around a bit too loosely. Anything you don't like you say it is liberal when it is neither liberal or conservative but is an issue unto itself.
     -- Waffler, Smith, Arkansas     
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    IT was the 60's Waffler. I know because I was one. It was dead in the 70's. It was a terrible idea (flower children drug culture) in the first place. Prohibition was not that bad of an idea but it caused more trouble than it was worth. Same argument can be made with the drug laws but the use is so much more devastating on an individual level. Legalizing them would bring drug use problems up to the level of alcohol in numbers which would make drug use a bigger problem in this country than alcohol. I am not against responsible use of anything. Unfortunately we are more and more a society of irresponsible people. Can't rate the quote because I have no idea what he is talking about.
     -- warren, olathe     
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    See what former drug cops, DEA agents , judges and other interested people have to say about the drug war, LEAP.CC. A great book on the subject is " Bad Trip" , available on Amazin.com. If anyone thinks that this War on Drugs is winnable, please send me 100$ and I'll send you the deed to the Brooklyn Bridge.
     -- jim k, austin, tx     
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    warren, olathe hit on something. Good ideas when put into practice almost always become disasters. Best to leave good ideas to the individual himself.
     -- cal, lewisville, tx     
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    Joseph McCarthy was right all along ! Heinlein was embraced by atheist and the hippy movement, leaning toward one world government. Breaking down our Christian fundamentals through secularizing socialistic activities. Bleeding heart liberals ( Nadiyb ) perverted tyrants Grandee. Currently in power.
     -- Ron w13, Or     
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     -- A.WOODS, Gloucester      
     
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