"The concept of military necessity is seductively broad, and has a dangerous plasticity. Because they invariably have the visage of overriding importance, there is always a temptation to invoke security "necessities" to justify an encroachment upon civil liberties. For that reason, the military-security argument must be approached with a healthy skepticism."
Justice William J. Brennan
(1906-1997) U. S. Supreme Court Justice
Brown v. Glines, 444 US 348 (1980)
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Reader comments about this quote:
 -- Anonymous      
This quote is timely, timeless and essential -- we need to be reminded, alleged "necessities" are temporary but liberty is an eternal value.
  • 1
     -- Anonymous      
    Here, not shooting one of the great destructive forces against liberty, his overall premise is mostly correct. Civil liberties carries with it the connotation that the servant is greater than the master (the servant being the keeper of all rights with ability to create law). It is clear that the military-security argument must be approached with a healthy skepticism BUT !, that is not enough to stop the despot overriding inalienable rights for any reason.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
  • 3
    NO troops shall be used upon US citizens".US Constitution".that wasnt a quote, but thats the law Now, UN troops, a double no no. NO, NO UN troops. Somebody told me, "un patch on US soil....target" cant remember who
     -- Kimo, USA     
     -- jim k, Austin, Tx      
    Something that so-called conservatives should understand -- security is NOT more important than liberty. Restore Habeas Corpus! Which presidential candidate is promising that?...
     -- E Archer, NYC     
  • 2
     -- John, Vallejo      
    Science and innovation, the never ending quest to read peoples minds. Is he/or she telling a lie, The 4th and 5th, amendments, pushed aside for ( emergency, security sake.) As Mike points out the overall premise, kinda sorta. The justice stating he is the granter of liberties. The master mentality from a position of Authority. It is scary indeed how far military applications of interfacing have come. Predisposed to certain illnesses ? Guilty till proven innocent !! Moral Responsibility thrown out the window. Doubt is an amazing thing, to Overcome ! it drives the need to Know. Security is a two edged sword ! If one invokes it, the other is on guard !!
     -- Ronw13, Yachats OR     
  • 1
    Never liked this judge who helped re-write the constitution and centralized all power to D.C.,but the quote is worthy
     -- cal, Lewisville, tx     
  • 1
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