The only real security for social well-being is the free exercise of men’s minds.
more Harold J. Laski quotes
I do esteem individual liberty above everything. What is a nation for, but to secure the maximum liberty to every individual?
more D. H. Lawrence quotes
Every compulsion is put upon writers to become safe, polite, obedient, and sterile. In protest, I declined election to the National Institute of Arts and Letters some years ago, and now I must decline the Pulitzer Prize.
more Sinclair Lewis quotes
The only fence against the world is a thorough knowledge of it.
more John Locke quotes
If the innocent honest Man must quietly quit all he has for Peace sake, to him who will lay violent hands upon it, I desire it may be considered what kind of Peace there will be in the World, which consists only in Violence and Rapine; and which is to be maintained only for the benefit of Robbers and Oppressors.
more John Locke quotes
... whenever the Legislators endeavour to take away, and destroy the Property of the People, or to reduce them to Slavery under Arbitrary Power, they put themselves into a state of War with the People, who are thereupon absolved from any farther Obedience, and are left to the common refuge which God hath provided for all men against force and violence. ... [Power then] devolves to the People, who have a Right to resume their original Liberty, and, by the Establishment of a new Legislative (such as they shall think fit) provide for their own Safety and Security, which is the end for which they are in Society.
more John Locke quotes
If the rest of the country had adopted right-to-carry concealed-handgun provisions in 1992, about 1,500 murders and 4,000 rapes would have been avoided.
more John R. Lott, Jr. quotes
Where the very safety of the country depends upon the resolution to be taken, no consideration of justice or injustice, humanity or cruelty, nor of glory or of shame, should be allowed to prevail. But putting all other considerations aside, the only question should be: What course will save the life and liberty of the country?
more Niccolo Machiavelli quotes
As a man is said to have a right to his property, he may be equally said to have a property in his rights. Where an excess of power prevails, property of no sort is duly respected. No man is safe in his opinions, his person, his faculties, or his possessions.
more James Madison quotes
The class of citizens who provide at once their own food and their own raiment, may be viewed as the most truly independent and happy. They are more: they are the best basis of public liberty, and the strongest bulwark of public safety. It follows, that the greater the proportion of this class to the whole society, the more free, the more independent, and the more happy must be the society itself.
more James Madison quotes
The right of freely examining public characters and measures, and of free communication among the people thereon … has ever been justly deemed the only effectual guardian of every other right.
more James Madison quotes
Whatever the immediate gains and losses, the dangers to our safety arising from political suppression are always greater than the dangers to the safety resulting from political freedom. Suppression is always foolish. Freedom is always wise.
more Alexander Meiklejohn quotes
I believe that liberty is the only genuinely valuable thing that men have invented, at least in the field of government, in a thousand years. I believe that it is better to be free than to be not free, even when the former is dangerous and the latter safe. I believe that the finest qualities of man can flourish only in free air -- that progress made under the shadow of the policeman's club is false progress, and of no permanent value. I believe that any man who takes the liberty of another into his keeping is bound to become a tyrant, and that any man who yields up his liberty, in however slight the measure, is bound to become a slave.
more H. L. Mencken quotes
The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.
more H. L. Mencken quotes
The average man does not want to be free. He simply wants to be safe.
more H. L. Mencken quotes
War is an ugly thing but not the ugliest of things; the decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feelings which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. A man who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself.
more John Stuart Mill quotes
The courts are not bound by mere forms, nor are they to be misled by mere pretences. They are at liberty — indeed, are under a solemn duty — to look at the substance of things, whenever they enter upon the inquiry whether the legislature has transcended the limits of its authority. If therefore, a statute purporting to have been enacted to protect the public health, the public morals, or the public safety, has no real or substantial relation to those objects, or is a palpable invasion of rights secured by the fundamental law, it is the duty of the courts to so adjudge, and thereby give effect to the Constitution.
more Mugler v. Kansas quotes
If none of us ever read a book that was “dangerous,” had a friend who was “different,” or joined an organization that advocated “change,” we would all be the kind of people Joe McCarthy wants.
more Edward R. Murrow quotes
What gives the new despotism its peculiar effectiveness is indeed its liaison with humanitarianism, but beyond this fact its capacity for entering into the smallest details of human life.
more Robert Nisbet quotes
The paternalist project for our civil courts runs something as follows. After the revolution -- which perhaps has already taken place—the average citizen will enjoy a vast array of wonderful new rights to sue other people. You will be empowered to haul your neighbors and fellow citizens to court if you feel they have fallen short of good faith and fair play. You will be entitled to sue them for unlimited damages, punitive as well as compensatory, even over behavior that had previously been thought not subject to liability at all. Everyone will be under a vague but stringent obligation to look out for your safety and welfare, enforceable by legal action. You will enjoy a cornucopia of contention opportunities, a smorgasbord of suing options, a Lotus-land of litigability.
more Walter Olsen quotes
The most common characteristic of all police states is intimidation by surveillance. Citizens know they are being watched and overheard. Their mail is being examined. Their homes can be invaded.
more Vance Packard quotes
An avidity to punish is always dangerous to liberty. It leads men to stretch, to misinterpret, and to misapply even the best of laws. He that would make his own liberty secure must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates his duty, he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself.
more Thomas Paine quotes
If a juror accepts as the law that which the judge states, then the juror has accepted the exercise of absolute authority of a government employee and has surrendered a power and right that once was the citizen's safeguard of liberty.
more Justice Theophilus Parsons quotes
If a juror accepts as the law that which the judge states, then the juror has accepted the exercise of absolute authority of a government employee and has surrendered a power and right that once was the citizen's safeguard of liberty.
more Justice Theophilus Parsons quotes
According to Gestapo records…they had little need to engage in direct spying on the citizens since the citizens themselves were more than willing to do their spying for them.
more Kort E. Patterson quotes
For when they shall say, 'Peace and Safety', then sudden destruction comes upon them, as travail upon a women with child; and they shall not escape.
more St. Paul quotes
[W]e have to realize that the real problem is that the American people have been too submissive. We have been too submissive. It has been going on for a long time. ... [T]he bill that I have introduced ... is very simple. It is one paragraph long. It removes the immunity from anybody in the Federal government that does anything that you or I can't do. If you can't grope another person and if you can't X-ray people and endanger them with possible X-rays, [and] you can't take nude photographs of individuals, why do we allow the government to do it? We would go to jail. He would be immediately arrested, if an individual citizen went up and did these things, and yet we just sit there and calmly say, 'oh, they are making us safe.' And besides, the argument from the executive branch is that when you buy a ticket, you have sacrificed your rights and it is the duty of the government to make us safe. That isn't the case. You never have to sacrifice your rights. The duty of the government is to protect our rights, not to use them and do what they have been doing to us.
more Dr. Ron Paul quotes
The people have always some champion whom they set over them and nurse into greatness… This and no other is the root from which a tyrant springs, when he first appears he is a protector.
more Plato quotes
Fools rush in where Angels fear to tread.
more Alexander Pope quotes
We must plan for freedom, and not only for security, if for no other reason than only freedom can make security more secure.
more Sir Karl Popper quotes
Today, when a concerted effort is made to obliterate this point, it cannot be repeated too often that the Constitution is a limitation on the government, not on private individuals -- that it does not prescribe the conduct of private individuals, only the conduct of the government -- that it is not a charter _for_ government power, but a charter of the citizen's protection _against_ the government.
more Ayn Rand quotes
We have plenty of freedom in this country but not a great deal of independence.
more John W. Raper quotes
A liberal society stands on the proposition that we should all take seriously the idea that we might be wrong. This means we must place no one, including ourselves, beyond the reach of criticism (no final say); it means that we must allow people to err, even where the error offends and upsets, as it often will.
more Jonathan Rauch quotes
You and I are told we must choose between a left or right, but I suggest there is no such thing as a left or right. There is only an up or down. Up to man's age-old dream -- the maximum of individual freedom consistent with order -- or down to the ant heap of totalitarianism. Regardless of their sincerity, their humanitarian motives, those who would sacrifice freedom for security have embarked on this downward path. Plutarch warned, 'The real destroyer of the liberties of the people is he who spreads among them bounties, donations and benefits.'
more Ronald Reagan quotes
It is both illogical and inconsistent for a government to say people have a right to life and a right to self-defense but no right to own the tools necessary to defend their lives. It is illogical for a government that says its police have no obligation to provide individual protection to deny people the means to protect themselves. It is immoral for a government that repeatedly releases predators to prey on people to tell those victims they cannot have a weapon for self-defense. It’s stupid for a government that can’t control criminals, drugs or illegal immigrants to claim it can take guns away from criminals only if honest folks will give up theirs. Gun-control proposals are also an insult. Gun control by definition affects only honest people. When a politician tells you he wants to forbid you from owning a firearm or force you to get a license, he is telling you he doesn’t trust you. That’s an insult. The government trusted me with a M-48 tank and assorted small arms when it claimed to have need of my services. It trusts common Americans with all kinds of arms when it wants them to go kill foreigners somewhere—usually for the financial benefit of some corporations. But when the men and women take off their uniforms and return to their homes and assume responsibility for their own and their families’ safety, suddenly the politicians don’t trust them to own a gun. This is pure elitism. . . . Gun control is not about guns or crime. It is about an elite that fears and despises the common people.
more Charley Reese quotes
To be able to think freely, a man must be certain that no consequence will follow whatever he writes.
more Ernest Renan quotes
We do not move forward by curtailing people’s liberty because we are afraid of what they may do or say.
more Eleanor Roosevelt quotes
In March, 1982, Kennesaw, Georgia, passed a mandatory gun ownership ordinance which requires all heads of households to own a firearm—handgun, rifle or shotgun. In 1982, our crime against persons, which include murder, rape, armed robbery, aggravated assault and residential burglary, decreased 74%. In 1983 these same crimes decreased [an additional] 46%. ... I would also like you to be aware that our population has increased in excess of 20% since 1982. We have had no accidents nor incidents involving our citizens with regards to firearms. ... It is a pleasure to see our senior citizens strolling the streets at night without fear of becoming a victim of violent crime.
more Robert L. Ruble quotes
It is clear that thought is not free if the profession of certain opinions make it impossible to earn a living.
more Bertrand Russell quotes
I pray that no child of mine would ever descend into such a place as a library. They are indeed most dangerous places and unfortunate is she or he who is lured into such a hellhole of enjoyment, stimulus, facts, passion and fun.
more Willy Russell quotes
Freedom of thought is the only guarantee against an infection of people by mass myths, which, in the hands of treacherous hypocrites and demagogues, can be transformed into bloody dictatorships.
more Andrei Sakharov quotes
Standing up to a tyrant has always been illegal and dangerous. There is no guarantee but one -- to not live like a slave, nor to die like one.
more Eric Schaub quotes
From the equality of rights springs identity of our highest interests; you cannot subvert your neighbor's rights without striking a dangerous blow at your own.
more Carl Schurz quotes
It is dangerous to be sincere unless you are also stupid.
more George Bernard Shaw quotes
The only ends for which governments are constituted, and obedience rendered to them, are the obtaining of justice and protection; and they who cannot provide for both give the people a right of taking such ways as best please themselves, in order to their own safety.
more Algernon Sidney quotes
[O]ne who values his life and takes seriously his responsibilities to his family and community will possess and cultivate the means of fighting back, and will retaliate when threatened with death or grievous bodily injury to himself or a loved one. He will never be content to rely solely on others for his safety....
more Jeffrey R. Snyder quotes
A new fascism promises security from the terror of crime. All that is required is that we take away the criminals’ rights – which, of course, are our own. Out of our desperation and fear we begin to feel a sense of security from the new totalitarian state.
more Gerry Spence quotes
A man’s liberties are none the less aggressed upon because those who coerce him do so in the belief that he will be benefited.
more Herbert Spencer quotes
But this theory of our government is wholly different from the practical fact. The fact is that the government, like a highwayman, says to a man: 'Your money, or your life.' And many, if not most, taxes are paid under the compulsion of that threat. The government does not, indeed, waylay a man in a lonely place, spring upon him from the roadside, and, holding a pistol to his head, proceed to rifle his pockets. But the robbery is none the less a robbery on that account; and it is far more dastardly and shameful. The highwayman takes solely upon himself the responsibility, danger, and crime of his own act. He does not pretend that he has any rightful claim to your money, or that he intends to use it for your own benefit. He does not pretend to be anything but a robber. He has not acquired impudence enough to profess to be merely a 'protector,' and that he takes men's money against their will, merely to enable him to 'protect' those infatuated travellers, who feel perfectly able to protect themselves, or do not appreciate his peculiar system of protection. He is too sensible a man to make such professions as these. Furthermore, having taken your money, he leaves you, as you wish him to do. He does not persist in following you on the road, against your will; assuming to be your rightful 'sovereign,' on account of the 'protection' he affords you. He does not keep 'protecting' you, by commanding you to bow down and serve him; by requiring you to do this, and forbidding you to do that; by robbing you of more money as often as he finds it for his interest or pleasure to do so; and by branding you as a rebel, a traitor, and an enemy to your country, and shooting you down without mercy, if you dispute his authority, or resist his demands. He is too much of a gentleman to be guilty of such impostures, and insults, and villanies as these. In short, he does not, in addition to robbing you, attempt to make you either his dupe or his slave.
more Lysander Spooner quotes
If gun control bore any relation to homicide rates, Washington, DC would be the safest place in the country.
more Mark Steyn quotes
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