"Void of freedom, what would virtue be?"
Alphonse de Lamartine
(1790- 1869) - French writer, poet, politician who was instrumental in the foundation of the Second Republic and the continuation of the Tricolore as the flag of France
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Reader comments about this quote:
Great question. The terms would have to have a minimum of definitions expressed in any answer. By way of example, freedom here would be more expansive than mere choice. Freedom here encompasses the being. Virtue would be comparative to vise or some other opposite as would be definable at law. The quote would then indicate that the subject freedom is with the being that is non - evil or vile or, he who is without vice. So, without an entities ability to chose, there exists no value selection, no law to define, or being that exists. The statist theocracy that infests this land, that would control the being cradle to grave, robs freedom and is without virtue.
 -- Mike, Norwalk     
    Yes, there is no freedom without virtue and on this Presidents day: "Few men have virtue to withstand the highest bidder" George Washington. Today, this is so evident DC. There is no deviation in the administration of Virtue it is absolute. That which is not is defined as such in your heart.
     -- RBESRQ     
    Void of freedom is where we are headed if we don't vote 'em all out in November.
     -- jim k, Austin     
    Just open ones eyes and take a look around oneself and the self evident truth about the level of corruption in government is easy to see and what became of virtue is even easier to see. Virtue is decimated due to the meglo mania of those hat operate this virtueless system that makes criminals of all men.
     -- Anon     
    The legal obligation to be virtuous is not virtue but compelled compliance. Virtue is voluntary, virtue is by choice, virtue's price is paid by the virtuous. Law cannot compel virtue -- in fact it debilitates it. Hence the horns of the dilemma -- freedom requires virtue and virtue requires freedom.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
    Freedom, void of virtue, is outside our windows.
     -- A.WOODS, Gloucester     
    Virtue is defined as "the disposition to conform to the law of right; moral excellenceL: rectitude". Disposition is defined as a natural tendency, temperament or characteristic. I suppose a disposition can be learned and developed. While many have the natural disposition to be virtuous others need prodding, jail, justice and for the totally depraved sometimes apparently death. Freedom is necesary for a natural or learned disposition to virtue to be manifested. For those who do not mainfest a desposition to "conform to law", let them be locked up as with tax cheats. Thank God for the Virtuos for they pay their taxes and the wages of the IRS Agent, thank God for the non-virtuous for they give the IRS Agent something to do.
     -- Waffler, Smith     
    Waffler, a disposition cannot be "learned and developed" and meet your definition of "natural."
     -- A.WOODS, Gloucester     
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