"If the First Amendment means anything,
it means that a state has no business telling a man, sitting alone in his own house,
what books he may read or what films he may watch.
Our whole constitutional heritage rebels at the thought
of giving government the power to control men's minds."
Justice Thurgood Marshall
(1908-1993) first Black US Supreme Court Justice
Stanley v. Georgia, 1969
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Reader comments about this quote:
 -- Anonymous      
 -- Me Again     
  • 1
     -- Anonymous, Reston, VA US      
    In my opinion if the First Amendment means anything, it should protect the ability of anyone to say anything constructive about a candidate for political office within ninety (90) days of an election cycle, which has been recently breached by the McCain-Feingold Campaign Finance Reform legislation that protects incumbents from the free speech of the people.
     -- www.SaveTheGuns.com, Shapleigh, Maine     
  • 1
    This quote is ok, but he sure didn't like state's rights.
     -- cal, Lewisville, tx     
    Thurgood's argument falls down when its advocates are OK on government owned schools.
    How about an amendment separating school and state.
     -- Walter Clark, Fullerton CA     
  • 1
    There are many in such positions that are swayed by corporate, and private entities condoning perverted behavior under the cloak of liberty in our nation. Never the less it seems that there are a few families, perhaps 5 that wish to control the wealth and mind set of the populous of the planet. Knowing the cyclical nature of continuance. Well thought out over the course of time. Handed down from generation to generation.
     -- watchman 13, USA     
    I would like to thank the editor of Liberty Quotes for the opportunity to openly discuss sound doctrine in this forum which goes around the world. Unity of knowledge is what we seek. The whole truth and nothing but the truth so help me God. Keep your feet on the ground and your eyes on the stars, walk softly and carry a big stick.!!
     -- watchman 13, USA     
  • 1
    I would add "what he may ingest" and "what sexual practices he may consensually exercise" -- quite frankly it is none of the state's business because it is none of his neighbors' business, and the state is merely representative of the neighbors. It would also behoove the man to keep his private business to himself. What ever happened to good manners?
     -- E Archer, NYC     
  • 1
    It is very important to guard against perverted behavior around our children. Weather a person would hid in the closet or not. Even in your mind the unrighteous thoughts you are held accountable. Be as good as you can be if you wish to represent our children. Master builders are required for representation of our Republic. ! Not journeyman.! It is not the states responsibility, but the parents to be diligent in their judgment of who to hire and fire ! You might want to stand for Liberty and Freedom, but unless you are able to bolster unity, you only cast a doubt of secular and humanistic thought that has no place with those that trust in Divine Guidance as Paine. !! Division with in the party is the enemy within. If you do not believe in something other than yourself stand aside and be Quiet. So you might see who is your enemy !
     -- watchman 13, USA     
    Walter, I like it.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
    The First Amendment brings about the stimulus to motivate an individual to proudly and confidently tell you what books he or she reads or what films they observe and the supporting justification for these activities.
     -- Fredrick William Sillik, Anytown     
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