"In our country are evangelists and
zealots of many different political,
economic and religious persuasions
whose fanatical conviction is that
all thought is divinely classified
into two kinds -- that which is
their own and that which is false
and dangerous."
Justice Robert H. Jackson
(1892-1954), U. S. Supreme Court Justice
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Reader comments about this quote:
Bible fundamentalists are good examples of this quote. They know the "truth" and those who preach something else are labled as "false prophets". The current crop of "enviromentalists" are another example of this. Al Gore said that those who doubt his version of "man made global warming" are equal to Holocaust deniers, case closed, no further debate needed.
 -- jim k, austin     
    I smile, yep, absolutely.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
    Beware of zealots and one issue people. Jim I would be interested to know what you think about Holocaust deniers. Do you feel they are justified in there position? I think you may be misquoting Gore. He probably did not say "Those who doubt MY version" but may have said "those who deny facts". See how even you may change things to read the way that you want them to read whether or not you do it intentionally or inadvertently. It is still a major flaw in our ability to think and communicate accurately. Holocaust deniers say that it is just the view or propaganda of those who love Jews. Others say that the holocaust was a fact. Can you know a fact when you see one?
     -- Waffler, Smith, Arkansas     
    You know facts by the evidence that surrounds them .. just as we can know gravity but what 'goes up, comes down' etc. Other so-called facts are not 'known facts' if there is no hard, indisputable, evidence to prove them. An example would be Gore's 'global warming' theory. Anyone who denies the holocaust is capable of denying an enormous amount of hard evidence .. clearly someone not interested in the truth but rather an agenda! Perhaps an inconvenient 'truth' for them?
     -- gdg, windsor, on     
    Way back then! Worried about Zealots. II remember, Robt Heinlein, in his future history series, thought that the US would be taken over by some religious zealots for a while. (Sort of a 'dark ages', eh.) And of course, that's what the dark ages were. The church taking over, before "the Age of Reason." We never learn.
     -- Senor Reek, Heartland West     
    Waff, I'm trying my best to make some sense out of your message, but it ain't easy. I may not have quoted Al exactly, but he equated folks who oppose his "facts" with those who say the holocaust never happened. I try hard not to deny "facts", but I haven't heard many from Al, so there isn't much to deny if it's facts you're denying. Al isn't interested in any discussion on these issues since His Highness is the final authority.
     -- jim k, austin     
    When you have your head in the sand you are unable to hear the truth... why do you think that God and Money have such a close relationship - POWER and lots of it!
     -- RobertSRQ     
    Having zeal, or passion, for something is an emotional response. There is nothing wrong with excitement or having strong emotions for something, but one cannot base their entire life's decisions on it. We were also given minds for rational thought. The zealot will become so blinded by his passion that he cannot think and come to conclude what the real results of his zealotry will be. That is when the intransigent error comes.
     -- Ken, Allyn, WA     
    When you are in a hurry to get something agreed to, just exaggerate. A grain of truth is a good thing, but often it is covered in hysteria, gloom and doom in order to push through the 'solutions.' Religious zealots have been mastering that since recorded time. Politicians and lawyers do it in the course of business every day. And who would have thought that 'environmentalists' had ulterior motives? It is not so much that the truth isn't being told as much as the truth is being adorned with lies by thieves and rapists to further their own goals. That's how 'pollution' became 'climate change,' 'invasion' became 'pre-emptive defense, and 'debt' became 'credit.' The list goes on and on... ;-) Who would have thought that Orwell would only be off by about 25 years?
     -- E Archer, NYC     
    Funny how we cannot communicate or think clearly when we don't use the correct terms as they were originally defined to understand ancient concepts. Those who seek to understand words for the times in which they were spoken are rare indeed. When the fanatical masses agree upon an issue, regardless of actual fact -- but merely upon what they are told through media and political leaders -- then is the time when society redefines itself into a new era, as it rejects the foundations from whence it came.
     -- Logan, Memphis, TN     
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