The constitutional right of free speech has been declared to be the same in peace and war. In peace, too, men may differ widely as to what loyalty to our country demands, and an intolerant majority, swayed by passion or by fear, may be prone in the future, as it has been in the past, to stamp as disloyal opinions with which it disagrees.
more Justice Louis D. Brandeis quotes
The makers of our constitution undertook to secure conditions favorable to the pursuit of happiness... They sought to protect Americans in their beliefs, their thoughts, their emotions and their sensations. They conferred, as against the government, the right to be let alone – the most comprehensive of the rights and the right most valued by civilized men.
more Justice Louis D. Brandeis quotes
All ideas having even the slightest redeeming social importance – unorthodox ideas, controversial ideas, even ideas hateful to the prevailing climate of opinion, have the full protection of the guarantees [of the First Amendment].
more Justice William J. Brennan quotes
The Framers of the Bill of Rights did not purport to “create” rights. Rather they designed the Bill of Rights to prohibit our Government from infringing rights and liberties presumed to be preexisting.
more Justice William J. Brennan quotes
If there is a bedrock principle of the First Amendment, it is that the government may not prohibit the expression of an idea simply because society finds the idea itself offensive or disagreeable.
more Justice William J. Brennan quotes
I want a government small enough to fit inside the Constitution.
more Harry Browne quotes
The Bill of Rights is a literal and absolute document. The First Amendment doesn't say you have a right to speak out unless the government has a 'compelling interest' in censoring the Internet. The Second Amendment doesn't say you have the right to keep and bear arms until some madman plants a bomb. The Fourth Amendment doesn't say you have the right to be secure from search and seizure unless some FBI agent thinks you fit the profile of a terrorist. The government has no right to interfere with any of these freedoms under any circumstances.
more Harry Browne quotes
Be assured that if this new provision [the 14th Amendment] be engrafted in the Constitution, it will, in time, change the entire structure and texture of our government, and sweep away all the guarantees of safety devised and provided by our patriotic Sires of the Revolution.
more Orville Browning quotes
The right to discuss freely and openly, by speech, by the pen, by the press, all political questions, and to examine the animadvert upon all political institutions is a right so clear and certain, so interwoven with our other liberties, so necessary, in fact, to their existence, that without it we must fall into despotism and anarchy.
more William Cullen Bryant quotes
What is right and what is practicable are two different things.
more James Buchanan quotes
The village atheist has the right to be heard; he has no right to be heeded. While he has a right not to have his own children indoctrinated in what he believes are false and foolish teachings, he has no right to dictate what other children may be taught.
more Patrick J. Buchanan quotes
After a shooting spree, they always want to take the guns away from the people who didn't do it. I sure as hell wouldn't want to live in a society where the only people allowed guns are the police and the military.
more William S. Burroughs quotes
Freedom and the power to choose should not be the privilege of wealth. They are the birthright of every American.
more George Herbert Walker Bush quotes
Today the Justice Department did issue a blanket alert. It was in recognition of a general threat we received. This is not the first time the Justice Department have acted like this. I hope it is the last. But given the attitude of the evildoers, it may not be.
more George W. Bush quotes
Let us never tolerate outrageous conspiracy theories concerning the attacks of September the 11th; malicious lies that attempt to shift the blame away from the terrorists, themselves, away from the guilty.
more George W. Bush quotes
I don’t give a goddamn. I’m the President and the Commander-in-Chief. Do it my way. ... Stop throwing the Constitution in my face. It’s just a goddamned piece of paper!
more George W. Bush quotes
“Due process,” a standard that arose in our system of law and stemmed from the desire to provide rational procedure and fair play, is equally indispensable in every other kind of social or political enterprise.
more Edmond Cahn quotes
The government of the absolute majority is but the government of the strongest interests; and when not effectively checked, is the most tyrannical and oppressive that can be devised... [To read the Constitution is to realize that] no free system was ever farther removed from the principle that the absolute majority, without check or limitation, ought to govern.
more John C. Calhoun quotes
It is federal, because it is the government of States united in a political union, in contradistinction to a government of individuals, that is, by what is usually called, a social compact. To express it more concisely, it is federal and not national because it is the government of a community of States, and not the government of a single State or Nation.
more John C. Calhoun quotes
To maintain the ascendancy of the Constitution over the lawmaking majority is the great and essential point on which the success of the [American] system must depend; unless that ascendancy can be preserved, the necessary consequence must be that the laws will supersede the Constitution; and, finally, the will of the Executive, by influence of its patronage, will supersede the laws ...
more John C. Calhoun quotes
Stripped of all its covering, the naked question is, whether ours is a federal or consolidated government; a constitutional or absolute one; a government resting solidly on the basis of the sovereignty of the States, or on the unrestrained will of a majority; a form of government, as in all other unlimited ones, in which injustice, violence, and force must ultimately prevail.
more John C. Calhoun quotes
Free discussion is the only necessary Constitution -- the only necessary Law of the Constitution.
more Richard Carlile quotes
Whoever would overthrow the Liberty of a Nation, must begin by subduing Freedom of Speech... Without Freedom of Thought, there can be no such Thing as Wisdom; and no such Thing as publick Liberty, without Freedom of Speech...
more Cato quotes
If Congress sees fit to impose a capitation, or other direct tax, it must be laid in proportion to the census; if Congress determines to impose duties, imposts, and excises, they must be uniform throughout the United States. These are not strictly limitations of power. They are rules prescribing the mode in which it shall be exercised. ... This review shows that personal property, contracts, occupations, and the like have never been regarded by Congress as proper subjects of direct tax.
more Salmon P. Chase quotes
It will be necessary for us to be a nation of men, and not laws.
more Dick Cheney quotes
The whole modern world has divided itself into Conservatives and Progressives. The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of Conservatives is to prevent mistakes from being corrected. Even when the revolutionist might himself repent of his revolution, the traditionalist is already defending it as part of his tradition. Thus we have two great types -- the advanced person who rushes us into ruin, and the retrospective person who admires the ruins. He admires them especially by moonlight, not to say moonshine. Each new blunder of the progressive or prig becomes instantly a legend of immemorial antiquity for the snob. This is called the balance, or mutual check, in our Constitution.
more Gilbert Keith Chesterton quotes
In the United States, Sovereignty resides in the people, who act through the organs established by the Constitution.
more Chisholm v. Georgia quotes
The Act of Congress which we are impugning before you is communistic in its purposes and tendencies, and is defended here upon principles as communistic, socialistic - what shall I call them - populistic as ever have been addressed to any political assembly in the world.
more Joseph H. Choate quotes
The power of the Executive to cast a man into prison without formulating any charge known to the law, and particularly to deny him the judgment of his peers, is in the highest degree odious and is the foundation of all totalitarian government whether Nazi or Communist.
more Sir Winston Churchill quotes
A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murderer is less to fear. The traitor is the plague.
more Marcus Tullius Cicero quotes
Nothing can destroy a government more quickly than its failure to observe its own laws, or worse, its disregard of the charter of its own existence.
more Justice Tom C. Clark quotes
I can find no warrant for such appropriation in the Constitution.
more Grover Cleveland quotes
I feel obliged to withhold my approval of the plan to indulge in benevolent and charitable sentiment through the appropriation of public funds... I find no warrant for such an appropriation in the Constitution.
more Grover Cleveland quotes
You know the one thing that's wrong with this country? Everyone gets a chance to have their fair say.
more Bill Clinton quotes
We can't be so fixated on our desire to preserve the rights of ordinary Americans...
more Bill Clinton quotes
We can't be so fixated on our desire to preserve the rights of ordinary Americans...
more Bill Clinton quotes
If the personal freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution inhibit the government's ability to govern the people, we should look to limit those guarantees.
more Bill Clinton quotes
The purpose of government is to rein in the rights of the people.
more Bill Clinton quotes
When we got organized as a country and we wrote a fairly radical Constitution with a radical Bill of Rights, giving a radical amount of individual freedom to Americans ... And so a lot of people say there's too much personal freedom. When personal freedom's being abused, you have to move to limit it. That's what we did in the announcement I made last weekend on the public housing projects, about how we're going to have weapon sweeps and more things like that to try to make people safer in their communities.
more Bill Clinton quotes
When we got organized as a country and we wrote a fairly radical Constitution with a radical Bill of Rights, giving a radical amount of individual freedom to Americans, it was assumed that the Americans who had that freedom would use it responsibly.... [However, now] there's a lot of irresponsibility. And so a lot of people say there's too much freedom. When personal freedom's being abused, you have to move to limit it.
more Bill Clinton quotes
If the author of the Declaration of Independence were to utter such a sentiment today, the Post Office Department could exclude him from the mail, grand juries could indict him for sedition and criminal syndicalism, legislative committees could seize his private papers ... and United States Senators would be clamoring for his deportation that he... should be sent back to live with the rest of the terrorists.
more Frank I. Cobb quotes
The Bill of Rights is a born rebel. It reeks with sedition. In every clause it shakes its fist in the face of constituted authority... It is the one guarantee of human freedom to the American people.
more Frank I. Cobb quotes
We have to yet really seriously debate the constitutional issues and whether or not we're willing to give up more freedom in order to have more security.
more William S. Cohen quotes
Every effort to confine Americanism to a single pattern, to constrain it to a single formula, is disloyalty to everything that is valid in Americanism.
more Henry Steele Commager quotes
Lawyers are being graduated from our law schools by the thousands who have little knowledge of the Constitution. When  organizations seek a lawyer to instruct them on the Constitution, they find it nearly impossible to secure one competent.
more Committee on American Citizenship quotes
Every citizen has a right to bear arms in defense of himself and the state.
more Connecticut Constitution quotes
The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government.
more Constitution for the United States quotes
We the People of the united States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquillity, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
more Constitution for the USA quotes
In all criminal cases whatsoever, the jury shall have the right to determine the law and the facts.
more Indiana Constitution quotes
Every citizen has a right to keep and bear arms; and this right shall never be questioned.
more Maine Constitution quotes
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